The Not-so-Free Chair

When residing in Kaohsiung and replacing our living room furniture in 1997, disposal of the old stuff was necessary, I contacted the local environmental protection team and was given an appointment for a truck that would come and take the old stuff. My requirement was to have it at the curbside no earlier than 2 hours before pickup. Ten years later, preparing to move to Tainan, I contacted the team again. A lot of our furniture did not follow us.We started anew. 

We now live in Holland, MI, where the city doesn’t provide any such service. I’ve no complaints, though. Putting old furniture on the curbside is “casually allowed” so long as it doesn’t stay more than a day or two. Some intrepid people with their own trucks pick and choose. If it’s at all usable as furniture or salable as metal, someone will take it before the police knock on a door with instructions on what must be done.

Screenshot 2020-05-02 at 19.40.50

We’d only been in town for about 2 weeks in 2018 when I espied a particularly valuable “glider rocker” in front of a house across the street from our temporary digs.I snatched it up. When we moved into our own home it became my favorite chair. The only only drawback was the color of the cushions. When I ordered replacements from the manufacturer in Canada, my free chair suddenly cost me $200. But almost as soon as I clicked “buy” on the web page the chair began to squeak and groan when sat upon.  

We’ve now been in the house for 18 months. Across about 10 of those, I lubricated, disassembled, glued, tightened and whatever else I thought might help. I needed to “redeem” the cost of the cushions. But finally, I gave up and looked on Craigslist, where I found a replacement for $50. The new cushions fit. The squeaky one with the Craigslist cushions was banished to an enclosed porch. 

With spring in the air, we want to use that porch. Today we cleaned it out.  I once again disassembled the chair. This time I put it back together without the “rocking-gliding” parts. It no longer rocks, glides or speaks. Though I’d never have paid $250 for this pair of chairs, each is comfortable in its own place. 

David Alexander now resides and scavenges furniture in Holland, MI after 39 years in Taiwan.

%d bloggers like this: