Sunday, May 15, 2011

Red Chair Joy

Here's the thing about joy--it often finds you unexpectedly; coming out of nowhere when you least expect it. The trick, I have found, is to be paying attention, and to grab it when it is floating by.

I found joy in the strangest place today; I found it in a chair. A red chair, to be specific. No--I'm not kidding. A chair.

I decided, a few days ago, that I might take a bit of the money I inherited from my grandmother (Germambie, who as many of you know I lost back in February) and buy myself a new couch. She was a big one for joy, my grandmother. She lived and breathed it, in fact. But that's besides the point.

The point is, I have an old couch that I've re-covered, and stapled back together, and duct taped underneath so the cat couldn't climb up inside (Samhain, I'm looking at YOU). And I thought maybe I would finally go looking for a new one. Haven't found one yet. Instead, I found this.

Yes. It's a chair. A recliner, actually. And it is RED. Mind you, this isn't a great picture, and it is more of a wine-red than this shows. But still. Red.

I'm a woman who lives in a house where most of the walls are a nice mellow cream color. Whose tastes run to neutrals like black and brown and maybe a touch of slate blue/gray. And this chair is RED.

And when I saw it in the store, it caught my eye. I thought about it for two days, and tried to talk myself out of it. "Self," I said. "It's red. Not tan. Not black. RED." And my self said, "Don't care. Want it. JOY."

And so today, I went back and I bought it. And you know what? It makes me happy. This red chair, sitting in my living room, minding its own business and getting ready to collect cat hair in various shades of black and gray and even orange (I'm looking at you, Samhain). Why? Because it is comfortable, and fits in the space, and I can use it to write in. And because, for some inexplicable reason, it brings me joy. And joy is nothing to pass up, when it comes to you. Even if it is RED.

Clearly Angus agrees. Yay. Yellow cat fur. What was I thinking?

Oh, that's right--joy. Red chair joy.

What unexpected thing brought you joy? Really--I want to know.


  1. Taking a detour off the highway due to super backed up traffic. We ended up driving through PA mountains with dark clouds and bright sun and mist rising up and it was so beautiful that I started laughing. The laughter scared my boyfriend I think until I explained it. But it was just so beautiful and I was just so happy in that moment.

    Angus is beautiful. Orange fur and red chairs Always go together.

  2. Your post about your special red chair got me to thinking. I got new bed linens and drapes for a bedroom and had a problem getting new lamps. I found one I liked on eBay and bought it and then found another that I thought was so-so, but nobody else bid on it, so I got it for about six bucks including shipping. When it arrived it was an old lamp which looked like it had been around the block a few times, but it was the perfect color, size and shape and exactly what I needed. In fact, I liked it better than the first lamp I got. It was such a small thing, but it was so perfect for my needs. It makes me happy because it was a neglected, probably cast off lamp that I now truly appreciate. And I keep wondering how old it is and where it has been.

    And on a more personal level, I discovered Teva mush sandals and my feet are very joyful that I did.

  3. Hooray! I love red. And the chair looks way cosy, as is evidenced by the cat sleeping in it. =)

  4. Bethany and Cathy--I loved your stories! Thanks for sharing them with me.

    And yes, every single cat has already spent time on that chair, and I only bought it yesterday. I'll be lucky to be able to sit in it at all!

  5. Getting a new couch was bliss was for us, even though it did NOT come in red, which I wanted.

    Maybe your grandmother inspired the color choice. "Get the RED!! Why doesn't she hear me? RED!!!! There, she listened." ;-)

  6. I read a novel by Amanda Quick titled Wait Until Midnight. I love her (Jayne Ann Krentz) and the book was good.
    In the novel there was a character who was serializing a novel. She put a little piece of her novel in a newspaper (The Flying Intelligencer) every week. And she was having fun writing it.
    I thought - I can't remember when writing was that fun.
    I decided to try it even though the original person doing it was a fictional character.
    I'm working on the third installment & guess what? I'm having fun.
    I have 3 beta readers & then I post every Friday. I try not to concern myself with whose reading it.
    Also, I don't have to agonize too much because no one is paying me.
    Fun. Joy.

  7. Judy, Judy, Judy--what a great idea! So glad it is working out the way you wanted it to :-)

  8. I like red chairs. ;) I'm so happy you found something to bring you some joy, especially since you can relate it to someone you lost. That's wonderful.

    Unexpected joy for me? It was a double edged sword. I've found so much joy in who my oldest daughter is becoming. But the more she becomes who she was meant to be, the closer she is to leaving me. And I know that's the way of it, and I want her to be successful and happy, but it seems like there's never enough time.

  9. Saranna,

    I know how you feel. It is hard to watch people (kids, family, friends, whatever) grow away from you. [Robin Wright--I'm looking at YOU!] But if they are doing so because their lives are growing and they are happy, you have to smile anyway, and let them go. At least a little bit...