After numerous Covid related postponements, Richard finally had his PT assessment today. While the physical therapist approved of our TV room Ekornes Stressless recliners, he recommended more lower back support and so this afternoon I had a craft project. While I readily admit my skills as a seamstress stagnated sometime after I earned my Girl Scout sewing badge, I did manage to make a small 4 inch x 10 inch lumbar support pillow.
Most of my remnant stash dates from the mid-1990s when I undertook the translation of Richard’s wearable art (jewelry) into soft sculptures (pillows). Despite having some lovely high quality upholstery fabrics from which to choose, he picked a left over from our Porsche days.
Most might consider the Porsche 944 a small car especially since its two back seats would only accommodate very young children before the days of safety required car seats. But we transformed our 1987 944S two-seater coupé into a station wagon on “race” weekends. We had enough room for suitcases, cooler, tools, jack, and a complete set of track wheels and tires. To protect the car’s interior when packing the Bridgestone R1s, I made four large drawstring bags using an easily washable cotton-poly blend that matched the car’s maroon leather interior. The bags were especially needed for the trek home when the wheels were covered in fine black brake dust after two days of driver education classes at the track.
Like pulling weeds from one’s garden, weeding a collection is often done to make space. But unlike the in-the-dirt activity, weeding books is tough. When you pull that volume off the shelf you are not simply ridding the lettuce patch of all those pesky maple whirly-birds that seem to have taken root over night. Weeding books severs a tactile connection between the written word that once transported the reader to an imaginary realm or conveyed clear instruction or the creative content of any genre in between. There is something special about the art of book collecting. Removing titles is tough. So difficult that librarians will procrastinate for years until bulging shelves, with no room for new purchases, demand attention. So difficult that we dub the work, de-selection, since it requires as much (maybe more) discrimination then demonstrated at the time of acquisition.
I have a small but growing collection of knitting books, a mix of instructional titles and pattern collections authored by well-respected designers. For a number of years, they were stashed on the floor under a Hutton Sculpture bench in our TV room. Not the best location but handy until the quantity outgrew the space available – but where to move them? Our first thought was to buy more shelving but space is at a premium in our 96-year old house with less than 1,000 square feet which generated today’s task – weeding books.
We each contributed to the newly freed shelf space. Gone are eight management titles that I will not re-read in retirement and nine, four-ring Porsche binders. We sold our white 1987 Porsche 944S in 2003 but kept the repair manuals as a visual reminder of the time spent at driver education events when we focused on corner apexes, acceleration points, and tach readings. Photos, trophies and the infrequent scent of brake dust will have to suffice. We even created enough space for new acquisitions as the inches of items weeded exceeded the number of inches needed. Happy reading!