Wednesday, June 1, 2016

As Needed

I have long experimented with folding furniture that can be brought out of a storage area. I started the practice because I found it depressing to contemplate space that's all dressed up with no place to go. Editing a room to the functioning essentials leaves it fast to use and easy to maintain. Since I store clothing in hanging nylon shoe bags and in chests, the closets are free to hold minor pieces of furniture.

Good low-tech housekeeping practice includes rounding up kerosene lamps and candlesticks at the end of the day. Sources of light are cleaned and trimmed after the breakfast dishes are washed. The process ensures fire safety, controls consumption of expensive wax and fuel, and simplifies dusting. Handling electric lighting the same way has the same benefits. In Seattle, summer daylight lasts so long that we rarely use electric light during the warm months. I simply dust and stow the lamps, a few of which are solar-powered.

The in-house musician has filled the front parlor with the mysterious artifacts of his craft. Some of the performance amenities are very useful in daily life. I rest my legs on a small folding X-stool as I type. The thing weighs next to nothing and is just the right height to keep my veins happy. The seat is flat and sized to support a meal tray or small project. King Tut and Roman emperors sat on something similar.

A music stand adjusts to become a very useful feather weight side table. Our thrift version with its faded stencil of a high school name is far from elegant, but I am told the brand is stellar. I can grab it with one hand, put no stress on my joints, and have a horizontal surface where and when I want it. 

With the small essentials of daily life stowed in a side bag, I can move freely and effectively both in and out of the house.    -30-

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