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being a sport

And we're on to day 5 of my traumatic week. Let's take a little time off from musing on speeding tickets and human frailty, to talk about furniture moving. That's what happened last night when the kids came over. There's less for them to do here than at the big house, and they get tired of eating, watching soccer and Simpsons, and playing cards, so when homework was over last night I asked them what they wanted to do and they said: Move the furniture.

Fair enough.

I thought the living room was looking pretty good -- two couches, book case, end table, TV, and some room to move around -- but Imo and Ed wanted to bring in The Big Chair. It's so comfortable, said Ed, and it is, but it takes up a lot of space. Trying to fit it into the living room would, I said, be like trying to cram more than one elephant into a phone booth. The kids looked puzzled.

(Time for a quick geezing sidebar on the vanishing phone booth. Nowadays if you need a public phone you tend to get a receiver on a pole. And it tends not to work. I wonder what college kids are cramming each other into. I wonder where Clark Kent is changing. To be honest I don't know that I miss the actual smelly dirty little booths, but I miss the idea of them. How do we express the image of a very small contained space with one function? Okay, I'm done.)

With a reasonable amount of grunting and lifting and pivoting and so on, we manoeuvered The Big Chair from the spare bedroom to the living room. It took up all the free floor space. Now there was nowhere to stand.

See what I mean? I told the kids. No room.

But they disagreed. Let us arrange it Dad, they said. So I went to the kitchen to do dishes, and when I returned, my living room looked like a cross between a furniture warehouse and the stateroom scene from A Night At The Opera.

Isn't it great? Imo called, from her prone position on the purple couch.

Isn't it great? echoed Ed from the depths of The Big Chair.

How do I get into the room? I asked. Because there was furniture everywhere. Forget wheelchair access, you had to be a bit of a steeplejack to find a seat. The kids laughed and laughed. Climb over! they cried. Come on, Dad, be a sport.

I opened my mouth to tell them put it all back the way it was -- but I could not form the words. They were having too much fun. And so I smiled and climbed the back of The Big Chair, sliding over Ed to get to the other couch. If I ever throw a party, I'll have to change things around, but for now I am happy to be a sport.


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