Old Chair

overstuffed  bedroom chair

The old overstuffed chair  was covered in a faded, soft fabric.  By the time it made its way upstairs, the springs were broken and poking up through the seat and an old blanket had been thrown over it  to hide the worn holes in each arm.  It was the kind of chair you see sitting abandoned alongside the road.  Not even worth hauling to the dump.  But because it was the 60’s and my mom was a tightwad frugal, it didn’t get thrown away.  It was given to me because I had been begging for a chair for my bedroom.   My brother already had a chair, also recycled.  He was older by 5 years so he got the first of almost everything.  That’s the way it worked at my house.   His chair was covered in vinyl or some slippery surface which I really didn’t like (and still don’t) and I think had been a recliner at one time.  But it ceased to recline and made its way upstairs to furniture purgatory.

When the old overstuffed chair arrived in my room, I knew not to complain.  It was a chair.  It was what I had begged for.   And we didn’t have the money to furnish the upstairs.   We didn’t have the money to furnish the downstairs, come to think of it.   Frugal.  That’s what we were.

I spent many hours in the chair.   Teenagers tend to retreat to their bedrooms frequently during those hormonal, awkward, years and I was no exception.  Mostly I sat sideways in the chair.  It had wide arms and was comfy to lie on while reading or doing homework.  I even remember lying with my head on the seat and throwing my legs up over the back of the chair while I listened to my record player.  The Beach Boys, The Supremes, and finally The Beatles.

That old chair became a good friend.   While it was not attractive in the least, it was cozy and snug and when things didn’t go the way I wanted them to, I found comfort in that old chair.  Just as easily I jumped up and down on the seat of that chair when things went right.  I threw my clothes on the chair, trying to find just the right outfit for that “first date.”  I picked at the stuffing coming out of the holes in the arms when I was nervous or angry.

I spent hours writing in my journal in that chair.   I sat in the chair and practiced my trumpet, until my brother came over and threatened to cram the horn down my throat.  I cried almost all night sitting in that chair, when some silly boy decided he didn’t care as much about me as I did about him.   I faced the end of the world in that chair (I thought).   I draped my high school graduation robe over that chair and later my college graduation robe,  in great anticipation of was going to happen next in my life.    And finally I sat in that chair the night before my wedding wondering if I was doing the right thing.

I would like to give credit to a new blog I found just today  …aliceandmolly.  Her “about” page triggered the memories I needed to complete this post.  Check out her blog.



About Life in the 50's and beyond...

Welcome to Life in the 50's and 60's and beyond .... where I write about my childhood memories, music of the 60's and about life in the country. I am a mother, grandmother, farmer's wife, business owner, and retired teacher.
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16 Responses to Old Chair

  1. Karen says:

    Ruth, do you still have the chair? Is it the one in the picture? Oh what a wonderful piece to write. I think you took all of us in a time machine back to the ‘days’. I, too, had a chair and somehow, even though I grew up in Missouri and live here in Ohio I managed to ‘keep’ my chair. My mother recovered it and then about 10 or so years ago, I had Fine Touch Furniture in Ada reupholster it. It is almost time for an update. But it sits in my living room and though I have to sort of scrunch creakily into and out of (such as on thehomefrontandbeyond also commented on), I still find myself trying to do that. Thank you for a wonderful piece. I think you might want to write a book with the title as: “This Old Chair Talks.” 🙂 Have a beautiful day!


  2. You pulled me straight into your memory and it was a wonderful ride and had me thinking back too. thank you so much.


  3. Caddo says:

    Oh I wish I had an old chair like that!! I remember getting in big trouble for sitting just the way you described, in the living room…but it was SO comfy!! Yep, this is Caddo–I’m back!! If you feel like it, come on over and have some leftover birthday cake and Spumoni! God bless you Big.


  4. poppytump says:

    Loved this memory ! Ah the daydream times in chairs … books long forgotten … hunched over writing diary thoughts and losing the pen down the side … I haven’t the chair but remember such times 🙂


  5. Katie says:

    Wow. I had that same chair…and some fairly similar memories…except minus the record player. My Beach Boys were on CD 😉


  6. leolyn2013 says:

    Oh what a nice story!I really love it.read it thrice and maybe read it again if I was sitting on an old chai!


  7. What a lovely post! Thanks for sharing it with us.


  8. Some songs just seem to evoke memories – “In My Room” does that for me – listening to it sitting in my room on a rainy day feeling like I had no friends. Thanks for bringing it back.


  9. LB says:

    I read your post on my blackberry so didn’t see the photo and could only imagine “the chair”. Such a wonderful story and I love the chair! The story has made me (and many others, I’m sure) think of favorite chairs … I imagine my grandparents in their matching chairs 25 years ago. I have them now and they look like toys compared to the chairs that are being made today.
    Lovely post!!


  10. I love your memories–they are still so vivid and bring back memories I have of my old chair that was just big enough to curl up in with a good book–it was my refuge just as your chair was–even at my age I curl up in a chair in my living room and though when I unwind myself I am a little creaky–it is my favourite reading position


  11. Sun says:

    the chair looks as comfy as you describe it. 🙂 wonderful story.


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