Su Lum: Slumming | AspenTimes.com

Su Lum: Slumming

Su Lum
The Aspen Times
Aspen CO Colorado

The problem with upgrading your house is that if you make any improvements – say replacing that old sofa with a new one – you suddenly notice that everything else in the room looks old and tawdry, and next thing you know you’re redecorating and there is no end to it.

My daughter Skye, who is a mover and shaker of the first order, asked me what I’d like to upgrade if I had my druthers. I pointed to the nasty snarl of electric cords behind my tiny TV set in my living room and said, “Skye, I’d like to have this tiny flat-screen TV moved into my bedroom, I’d like to have a bigger flat screen in my living room, I’d like to get rid of all these wires, I’d like to be able to hear movie dialog without crouching in front of the TV set and I’d like to be able to watch my old VCR tapes and my DVD discs without having to have a PhD to figure out the remotes.”

To me, this was just a pipe dream. There had been years of disasters: extra speakers that didn’t work, VCR and DVD machines that didn’t work (or I didn’t know how to operate them), a too-big TV set in my bedroom and a too-small set in my living room, and I had despaired of ever getting it fixed.

WHAP. Three days later Skye was in Denver on business and a shopping spree for me and two days after that she and her husband Steve arrived with a 46-inch flat-screen Mitsubishi, a Blu-Ray DVD player, a combination VCR and DVD player (probably the last of its kind) and a neat glass table (“adult assembly required”) for the big TV with built-in surround sound just in time for the Super Bowl.

WHAP, WHAP, WHAP, furniture was moved to make way for the new technology and my living room was transmogrified into a movie theater.

Skye was on a roll and wanted to know what else might make my life a little better. Well, there was the matter of my bed. I’ve been wrestling with bed issues for years. I have a double bed, which was in the house when I bought it in 1972 – an old Sears Roebuck model with bookshelves in the headboard, which I love, but what I really hankered after was a queen-size bed. More room for me and the dachshunds, sheets that would really fit (they now make sheets that “fit” both double and queen, meaning that the double sheets bunch up because the sheets are too big).

I had intermittently gone on the Internet to search for beds with bookshelf backboards, to no avail. The bed needed to be low, so the puppies and I could get up on it and I needed shelves for the radio/CD player, books, pills and other detritus I keep close at hand. Skye went on the net to search for my ideal bed, found it under “platform beds” and WHAP, my new bed is in the mail.

We agreed that I shouldn’t order a mattress without trying it out first so, the next day, this past Sunday, my friend Hilary and I drove down to American Furniture Warehouse in Glenwood Springs and picked out a mattress for the new bed. WHOA – this was going really fast.

After picking out the mattress, I turned around and spied a ten-drawer dresser that would be just perfect to replace the old Sears model that had also come with the house and which shrieked, groaned and splintered whenever I pulled out a drawer.

The drawers of the AFW dressers went snick, snick, snick and before I knew it I had bought a mattress and a new chest of drawers.

This could end up with an entire remodel if I’m not careful. The kitchen linoleum is looking very shabby and the washer and dryer are antiques. I should probably update my computer which is, after all, two years old and therefore obsolete.


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