Color Us Old

Definitely a black cat on a cocoa-colored couch.

So Lynn and I are getting older, somehow, and with it comes the advice I used to get on a repeated basis from my late neighbor Mr. Trujillo: “Don’t get old, TL. Getting old is hell.”

“But Mr. Trujillo,” I would ask, every time this (frequent) conversation came up, “What is my option?”

Some days, though, I think he was onto something there. Until Ponce de Leon finds that magic Fountain of Youth, though, there appears to be only one alternative, and it doesn’t seem viable, so onward we go, getting older, falling apart.

I have an eye appointment in a week that I am feeling quite confident is likely to result in yet another pair of glasses. At my last eye appointment, a few years back, I ended up with prescription reading glasses that I mostly needed only when using Kara’s computer. These days I’ve given up on those glasses, because they don’t seem to help at all as I pick up invoices to enter into Quickbooks and then stretch them farther and farther from my eyes.

It seems counter-intuitive that I need to reach as far away as I can to bring little tiny numbers into focus, but that’s the only way it works: hold the paper at the very extension of my fingertips, and tilt the paper away from me. So yeah, probably new glasses.

Lynn in the meantime is going for her bionic shoulder. Well, not really; no titanium will be involved. But we appear to have moved onto a street where the requirement is that the woman of the house needs her shoulder repaired. Mrs. Leonard did that this summer; Lisa is in negotiations with her orthopedic surgeon. Erica, at the end of the street, had better watch out.

Lynn finally made her appointment with an orthopedic surgeon, who diagnosed a slight tear in the rotator cuff, a torn biceps ligament, and a bone spur. Health insurance being the fun exercise it is, she’s trying to balance the bound-to-be-busier-than-ever holiday postal season and that all-important already-met deductible. Surgery is scheduled for Dec. 30.

A friend who surprisingly doesn’t live on our street just underwent this surgery, so we’ve been getting tips from both her and her caretaker husband — even though I’m leaving Lynn on her own for recovery. “Where’s my dinner?” That’s what I’ll be asking.

One of the tips is the importance of a recliner for recovery. We have a recliner, sort of, but it is true its best days are behind it. So Lynn wanted a new recliner, and since we’re made of money, we went shopping.

There are two furniture stores in town, and one’s target demographic is people made of more money than we are. We’ve been in a few times, but it doesn’t make their furniture any less aimed at the Mt. Crested Butte mansion set.

That leaves the other store, where a hostile takeover by in-laws pushed out the long-time owner and replaced her with a woman who owns a trucking company — and who has not hesitated to use her new storefront to air her politics and anti-public health attitude.

Sometimes though, as I used to tell Mr. Trujillo, the options are limited. There’s the internet, but I don’t really know how anyone seriously goes about buying large furniture without physically testing its napability. Other people don’t seem to have much compunction about shopping for their furniture outside of town, but that seems cumbersome as well.

So we masked up and waded into Germ Central. Lynn went three times and I went twice, and we didn’t get recognized as repeat visitors at any time. Lynn identified the recliner she liked best on her first visit, and I agreed with her on her second, my first. But the owner said she had 40 more recliners arriving the day before Thanksgiving, so we went back.

And latched onto a very similar recliner from the same U.S. company, which was sitting in a set piece with a matching loveseat and couch. Before we left the house, Lynn wondered if we should be looking at couches as well. We like our couch a lot, but the cushions are sewn in and by now have a noticeable list toward the coffee table.

I said no, but as we were studying the chosen recliner the owner sat down on the couch — and both ends reclined as well. So now, since we are made of money, we are the proud owners of essentially three new recliners, some of which double as a couch.

Lynn did want to know if the furniture came in a different color, although the ones on the floor looked very similar to the couch we already owned, which if you ask me is green and if you ask Lynn is brown.

Here is what you should know: Lynn and I see color very differently. She is wrong, of course, but she has yet to see her color mistakes and so we argue. Over color. We try dragging friends into our arguments, but no one ever willingly picked a side on the old couch, which really was a rather non-descript color, no matter what it was (it was green).

But standing in the store in front of the recliner and couch, we both agreed they skewed green. So we were baffled when the store owner kept telling us the color was “cocoa,” and it was a Small Business special from the company. We could order a different color — for another $400 per piece. So, green cocoa it was.

Until the furniture got delivered yesterday. The delivery men — one of whom was just a boy when his mother worked at Pat’s — who showed no interest in wearing a mask while we were in the store, did ask if we wanted them to put masks on before coming in our house (yes, thank you), and when the pieces didn’t want to fit easily through the front door, it turns out they come apart. That’s handy.

Suddenly, though, Lynn said, “Oh! I see why it’s called cocoa.” And sure enough, out of the store light and in our house natural light, it turns out we purchased brown furniture. Cocoa-colored furniture. Not really a hint of green in sight. We even agreed on this.

In addition to being wrong about the color, I thought this furniture would be bigger than the pieces it replaced (in addition to multiple thanks from the owner, delivery was free; so was carting away the old sofa, which hopefully will find a second life at the Six Points Thrift Store), but end to end the sofa is shorter — yet somehow I have more room to stretch out by a couple inches.

The recliner is taller, so tall that when I got home last night and Lynn was talking to me, I finally had to ask where she was. Answer: in her recliner, but the top of her head is no longer visible from the front door. I’ll have to start watching what I’m saying as I come in.

I also worried that the animals would be sad that their beloved sofa was gone. I thought Ki’o wouldn’t be able to make it up the taller back of the sofa, but he managed, and although Oz hesitated momentarily, he overcame his uncertainty in short order to crawl onto the cushions. And Marrakesh? Well, he gave it all of five minutes in the house before he hoisted himself onto the sofa and gave it his paw’s-up.

And Lynn fell sound asleep in her new recliner, not waking up until after midnight, so I guess it will do for surgery recovery. There you have it: an entire family stamp of approval on the new acquisition, even if it’s brown and not green.

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