The Writing Chair

I follow one of my favorite authors on Facebook, who is currently driving from New York City to Florida to pick up her favorite writing chair for her new apartment in New York. Some of her followers questioned the importance of said chair. Couldn’t she just buy another one, or find one that was similar to it, or maybe find one that was, dare they say, better than this one specific chair?

I thought, “Clearly, they are not writers.” Okay. That sounded kind of elitest. Clearly, they did not partake in an activity that required a lot of sitting, or time pondering thoughts for long lengths of time. Because when I read of this writer’s quest, my first thought was, “Hell, yeah, I’ll drive from New York City to Florida to get my favorite chair!” I don’t know the circumstances of why this chair was in Florida and not in New York already, but I can say with confidence, that my chair would follow me for sure!

Now, my chair is no great shakes to some. Here it is:

 Image

It’s thirteen years old. Over the years, it’s been positioned in different rooms and different windows, so it’s discolored. Two Siberian Huskies have likewise tried to make it their own, so there are some stains that just won’t come out. Occasionally, it smells and then I have to shampoo it. Other than the discoloration, the upholstery held up pretty well. There are no holes in the chair and pillows are still decently stuffed. I’ve considered reupholstering it, but that’s kind of pricey. I’ve tried slipcovers, but I can never find one that fits right.

But I will never get rid of it because it is the most comfortable piece of furniture I have ever encountered in my entire life.

When it comes down to it, that chair has seen me through many years and many things. When I was pregnant with my son, I lived in it. It was perfect to lean against one side and elevate my feet on the other. It holds me when I’m sick, along with any animal that has come to keep me company. My son now parks his butt there when he’s sick. It’s seen me through late hours of school work, movie watching and writing. I can be in this chair hours and hours and hours, days, entire weekends, and never have to shift positions. I am always comfortable. My son and I will read there together and we both fit just fine. It’s just a good chair.

So, it’s not the prettiest chair around. It’s showing its age. But it holds up and it’s still here, which is more than I can say for the accompanying couch we had with it. I made the quilt that is hanging over the back of it. Together, they both welcome me whenever I have the time to curl up with them. It’s my chair and my woobie. And I, too, would drive any distance to retrieve it!

On Being a Wino

Yeah, I’m a bit of a wino. I used to work in a small winery in New York State in the tasting room. Best. Job. Ever. It was a second job for me. I’m a work at home mom, and this provided me with the perfect outlet to get out of the house and be around adults and a have adult conversation. People who come to wineries aren’t there to talk about their kids, they’re there to talk about wine. They’re there to either talk knowledgably about it or learn about it.

I miss that job. I’d still have it today, but for the fact we relocated seven hours away for my husband’s job. Sure, there are wineries here in Virginia, and the people seem personable enough, but this one was home. These people were my people. That feeling of acceptance is hard to find.

This little winery takes itself just seriously enough. The winemaker is good at what he does. He’s not afraid to experiment. It’s a small, respectable operation. Their wines have won numerous awards in the region. It’s a very successful, part-time business. They could very easily make it their careers. They’ve got the equipment, the staff, the marketing, the location, the word of mouth, and the product to grow the business into something bigger. But they don’t want to do that. They love wine. So they don’t want their hobby to become a job, or something that might bring them extra stress. They want to keep it fun. That’s why I can’t bring myself to go work for another winery in my new home. I have the experience and know-how to be hired quick. I can talk the talk and walk the walk no doubt about it.

But I’m unconventional.

See, I know that whether you spend $7.99 or $799 on a bottle of wine, there’s no guarantee that when you open it up and taste it, you’re going to like it. If you spend $300 on a bottle of Chateau Pavie because, well, hey, it’s Chateau Pavie, and aren’t prepared to pour it down the drain when you open it up and hate it, then you should stick to drinking cocktails. Because the reality of wine is, you could love and hate both a cheap and expensive bottle of wine. It’s all about your palate, not what somebody tells you is good. That’s what they think is good. Or what they think they’re supposed to think is good.

There are so many bottles of wine out there that unless you’re sitting down with, like, Andrea Immer, nobody you’re drinking with is going to be able to tell the price of the wine you serve them by the taste. Nobody. I know this to be a fact. I’ve drank with lots of people and quite a few sommeliers in my day.

Having said all that, I buy what looks like I’ll like. It might be a $7 bottle, it might be a $20 bottle, it might be a $30 bottle. I usually don’t go above $30 and that’s usually only for a special occasion. I try to keep my stuff under $20. I also buy what I’m in the mood for. Currently, I’m on an Argentinian Malbec kick, can’t get enough of it, even if it’s in August.