Reinvention means emptying as well as filling.
Always it was thus.
New notions require throwing out the old. And in America, the old turns out to be “stuff.”
After sending the tall lights off in style, we took down the hanging rods, stored the thread and cabinets, and disassembled the design wall (custom-built to outlast the 100-year-old house — think toe-nailed wood holding the homosote panels in place).
Then I disassembled the shelves that held the stereo equipment.
Note the big CDs (i.e. long play stereo records) at the bottom right in the photo above, as well as the bits of audio tapes above them. These are but a small token of the whole stash, scattered about the room on shelves and in drawers. Yes, the stereo equipment, state of the art when we bought it in, um 1982 or so, had a turn table, a tape player, a CD player, and a tuner, tuned to NPR and KPBS, our classical station, as well as the am station that brings in Duck football. All the necessary conveniences.
Deciding to get rid of the records and the turntable was a source of some emotional distress — and some relief:
The photo above shows a few of the LPs to be discarded. They are mostly opera recordings, and represent a period in my life where I flung myself into learning about operas by buying quantities of long-play records. It was the heyday of Beverly Sills and Pavarotti, and I gloried in riding around Kansas in my Datsun truck, opera screaming from the open windows. It was my version of rebellion.
I haven’t played an LP (except for the Christmas klezmer record) in years, and in fact, the turntable is a bit slow — probably needs some maintenance. We are hoping Sam can sell both turntable and the records. He’ll get to keep the proceeds, and we’ll get to feel like we’ve paid it forward!
Of course, what happens when you start to dismantle a well-occupied space is chaos:
We have entered the middle class.
Only the TV sits on a stand which Jer declared to be “early graduate student” (apologies to grad students reading this), but thanks to the internet and instant gratification, the TV will have its very own stand by Tuesday or Wednesday.
The room has been reinvented. Now all I have to do is paint enough canvases to discover a new version of myself. –June
And return the recliner. And tuck away a few other odd pieces of leftover detritus. And get rid of the butt-biting rattan chair and its footstool. It ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings — but at least the sound will be from an MP3 player.