Sunday, January 22, 2012

Desk Job

My grandfather's name was Olan Cleo Thomas.  He preferred the initials "O.C." and perhaps I can't blame him.  When I was a kid I often overheard his friends call him "Tom".  This was short for his last name, "Thomas",  but I didn't realize this. I actually thought his name was Tom Thomas for a while.  I just called him Granddaddy.

My granddaddy was a farmer, a school principal, and for a season, the postmaster at the small-town post office in Ralls, Texas.  By the time I met him, however, he had retired from all of these careers except the farming, and that had downshifted into gardening, really.  He taught me how to drive a car, shoot a gun, and took me to play golf with him many times.

In his bedroom he had an old wooden desk. Years after his death in 1989 (I think) the desk eventually made it's way to my house, Orangehouse, where it sat in my back room cluttered with toys and the computer printer and miscellaneous back room stuff that polite people put in their back rooms so visitors get the impression they're more organized than they are.

Over the Christmas break The M and I decided to sand it down, clean it up, and move it into David's room for him to use to do his homework.  For this task I donned my new Christmas overalls and a little "mousey" sander - the overt manliness of the former being balanced by the toy-like quality of the later. 

 [A Mouse sander doesn't quite qualify as a "power tool" - it's more like an electric toothbrush with attitude.]

 [After sanding it down, I used a leaf blower to blow the sanding dust out of the cracks.  This worked remarkably well.  Maybe it was the overalls, or maybe it was the leaf blower, but I had the urge to play the Lynyrd Skynyrd CD I bought at Cracker Barrel in a celebration of my redneckedness.]

[Four generations later, the desk has returned to a bedroom, this time my son's.]  

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