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Better is a big chair than ...

My son-in-law asks me, “When you’re going to write about “the CHAIR?”

I hadn’t thought about what an impossible situation that chair had been. Now it drives me to the computer. This is definitely a woman-versus-man dilemma.

Being the artist of the family I have always done the decorating and my sweet husband Al goes along with me. If I say, “Move the piano there,” he says, “Where”? Or, if I say “Hang the painting there,” he says, “OK.”

Life was sweet until “the CHAIR” came along!

At the furniture store a year ago a chair on the showroom floor catches Al’s eye and takes over his mind. A romance begins and Al wants nothing else. This chair is bigger than life, dark brown, overstuffed Italian leather, and it rocks and reclines. It belongs in a massive room in a hunter’s lodge with elk heads and wild pig trophies, guns and fishing poles.

So why can’t a man have what he wants? Isn’t he the king of his castle? He can and he is, except not in my bedroom! Until then the bedroom was ours. All of a sudden the bedroom becomes mine and Al sleeps, reads and watches TV there. I love our bedroom and Al loves his new chair which he insists belongs in our bedroom.

This sacred room is an artist’s masterpiece, showcases beauty and is a place to dream. Our king-size bed is covered with an off-white goose down comforter, and a dust ruffle in a Victorian design with romantic cabbage roses touching the floor. The off-white armoire with hand painted cabbage roses is used as an entertainment center. A large opening leads from the bedroom to the large 12-by-15 bathroom with a Jacuzzi tub and a vanity with mauve marble. The bathroom shows off a fireplace, and a large oil painting of a lady in pink hangs above it.

I knew when we purchased the chair that I would lose the battle. I tried to steer him to two soft sea foam green fabric matching rockers perfect for a bedroom. He said “I know what I want. A man works all day and he should be able to enjoy his chair in the evening.”

I said, “Yes, Dear you are right.”

He brings the chair home in a blizzard. I beg him to wait for our son-in-law to help him move the chair into the house. Al struggles and is now pole vaulting the chair from the truck.

I run to the phone to call our daughter, “Your daddy is trying to move that monster all by himself. He is going to kill himself.”

She says, “We can be over there in a couple of hours. Tell him to wait.”

In the back ground Al yells “I don’t need any help, I can do it myself.”

I watch him manhandle the bigger-than-life object squeezing it through the front double doors. Excitedly he pulls off rolls of plastic, tape and cardboard and says, “Oh no, it is the wrong chair. How could it be? It has to be the right chair. I saw the men put it on my truck.”

Al calls the furniture store. He is exasperated and irate and now on first name bases with Stephanie, the sales person. She is apologizing. The men at the warehouse are being reprimanded. Al re-wraps and single handedly squeezes the big lump of comfort through the front doors again back onto his truck and leaves for Albuquerque in a big snowstorm.

Al and this unbelievable ordeal is happening before my eyes, being the fair maiden I am, not a word passes my lip. You can imagine what was worth a thousand words by the uplifted brow, the twisted mouth, and the nodding of my head.

Our bedroom is designed to be big enough for a sitting room and we watch TV in the evening. Not any more. We now have this big brown elephant in the middle of the room, and Al is as happy as punch. He says to me,

“Baby doll, your chair is so small compared to mine.” Dwarfed by the presence of Al’s big chair, I retort back, “I am sitting in a petite chair meant for a bedroom. Maybe that’s why.”

The right chair for Al is in place. The king of his castle has marked his territory and he is sitting in it.

In the evening as Al sinks down into his chair and the leather sides engulf him, he adoringly looks over at me and with loving eyes he says, “Sweet Face, I love my chair. I am a happy man.”

I nod and say, “Yes dear!”

The final brushstroke: Better is a big chair with a happy husband than sitting alone in a beautiful room.

Reader’s comments

Hi Betty:

I agree; being the movie picker-outer makes for great entertainment, not just for my hubby but for myself! I’m often surprised at our differences after nearly forty years of marriage, but am learning to enjoy the discovery!


Farmington, N.M.

The Artist’s Quote

“Self-discipline begins with the mastery of your thoughts. If you don’t control what you think, you can’t control what you do.” — Napoleon Hill, author.