My back is killing me. I’m sitting on the back porch in a lotus position with my computer perched atop my pretzeled legs. In pain. From cleaning out our hall closet. But like the bliss from the ache you get after a good workout, I’m awash up in clean-closet-glow. When Madelyn came to visit us I wrote about getting her room prepared over at ReadyMade. The majority of getting it ready came in the form of stuffing the junk in the guest room into the hall closet. When I opened the door to said closet on Sunday I was aghast at how much shit I had managed to cram inside. Just disgusting. Summer clothes that were formerly folded up perfectly in a plastic bin were all over the place since I had to pull out some dresses when the first half of October blessed us with a ninety degree weekend. Bags were haphazardly hung from little hooks, boxes and boxes and boxes weren’t stacked, they were strewn. And art. It was everywhere! Art I had forgotten we owned. Art that belongs on my walls!
After a trip to Target to purchase eight plastic bins I tackled the mess. Four hours later I was done. Fifteen boxes had been broken down and four trash bags of ephemera had gone to the alley. (Packrats hurt the environment and I am so so sorry.) The Mister’s cassette and CD collection took up THREE BINS. WTF. But I am not going to vent about that here– or the fact that the boxes they were in had not been opened since we shipped them to California in 2005 and schlepped them back to Chicago in 2007– for fear that he will pull them out and buy an ugly tape player. Instead, I’m going to go back to the art that should be on the walls.
My sister painted this in second grade. It has hung in every apartment I have owned since then. Don’t believe me? I have photographic evidence from my first apartment (not the one I consider my real first apartment, but the one with the competing churches right next door to each other, read all about it here) after going through a box o’ crap in the closet. This needs to be framed and hung in the kitchen immediately.
This calendar has also been hung in every apartment I’ve inhabited in since the Mister and I started living in sin in 2003. It’s from the University of Ife, where both of my in-laws taught in Nigeria and whose grounds my husband grew up and played in. Score one for us: it’s already on the wall.
That chair doesn’t really live there; it was an alley find that I spray painted for my dad’s 65th birthday present. He hasn’t picked it up yet… even though his birthday was in June. He loved it, really he did!
These two were a gift from our friend Temi for Secret Santa last year. I am so happy he got me! They came from a market in Lagos and I think they’ll be perfect in wooden frames for the hallway.
My dad had this hung in his study in the basement when I was little. It came from his time in Tunisia. I’m planning on placing this somewhere in the kitchen.
A young Andrew Minowski drew this for the United Nations Program for the International Anti-Apartheid Year. In an index provided by Indiana University, I found this small note: Apartheid is a Monster., New York: United Nations Program for the International Anti-Apartheid Year, 1978. Location: South Africa Drawer #1, Poster #16. It seems all of the posters are on archive at the library at IU. My mother-in-law worked there for a time, so this is possibly from there. The Mister used to have it hanging in his studio apartment. I think it will live in the front room.
So what did I gain out of cleaning out the closet? A bad back. Post workout euphoria. Art to hang on my walls. Not bad!