Wrinkly Bits

A Blog by Gail Cushman

What’s Wrong With Camo?

I’m finally getting around to a back-to-normal state after all my renovation last winter. It took a few months, but I’m getting there. I had the interior of my house painted last winter and had to remove a lot of treasures from the walls, and when I did, I realized that they were not really significant, and didn’t bring me joy, as Ms. Kondo insists, so off to the good will store they went. So, here I am, ten months later, with bare walls, white, somewhat resembling the psycho ward in One Flew Over the Coocoo’s Nest. The only thing missing was Nurse Ratchet, and I figured if I waited long enough, she, too, would appear. Boy, was I right! She came in the form of my decorator friend who took issue with my Marine Corps decorating preferences, you know, camo everything, easy-to-clean with dirt and dust blending into my motif. And what’s wrong with four big white walls and a camo couch, anyway?

My friend, along with her mother, or, the two Ratchets, as I took to calling them, walked into my house and stared in silence as their right brains kicked into overdrive and then they laughed. With color chart in one hand, measuring tape in the other, the two began with the questions. This room needs an area rug, what color do you like? Coffee beans or eggplant or zebra. My left brain asked why I needed an area rug when I have a newly finished wood floor and a recent AARP advisory warned about area rugs as tripping hazards for this geriatric Marine. And where did you get this lamp, and do you happen to have a second just like it? It is lovely, but you need two, not one. Of course, I have no idea because we have lived in nine states, and more than a dozen towns, and I was the yard sale queen for many years. Yard sales are the way to go, if you were to ask me.

They started in, “You need a tapestry here, a big clock there, a mirror on the other wall and by the way, how about a new bench and table.”

I’m thinking, “I already have a watch and several clocks, and perfectly good mirror the bathroom, more than enough chairs and a reasonably new kitchen table, so what the heck are they talking about?”

Dr. Freud explained about right and left brains, and until today, I had never met a truly right-brained person, but I now understand that my brain is lopsided. My left brain works overtime, and my right brain has shriveled and died through lack of use.

The Ratchet ladies went through the house snapping photos while shaking their heads and smiling as if they had a secret. As they left the house, they hugged me and said, “Oh, thank you, we are putting together a before-and-after display and your house is a perfect candidate.”

That might be okay but am I the before or the after?

Gail’s Wrinkly Bits blog book Bits of Time are available only from Gail Cushman Books, Box 905, Columbus, MT 59019 for $15, plus $3.00 shipping and handling. Order Bits of Time by December 14 for Christmas delivery. Questions? Email Gail: gaildcushman@gmail.com

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Gail Decker Cushman

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