A Room Of One’s Own

The long-anticipated project to transform a corner of our basement into a functional office space is now well underway. Two sections of cinder block foundation wall have been liberally coated in DryLok and white paint, new electrical outlets and lighting fixtures have been installed, a portion of the exposed ceiling has been painted black, and a generous new carpet remnant stretches from wall to unfinished wall. Our master bedroom is, for the first time, starting to resemble the sort of sleeping quarters that befit adults rather than containing the hodgepodge of office furniture and assorted media that had lent it the air of an aging dorm room. Meanwhile, downstairs, I have been carefully arranging an inviting refuge, a secluded spot where I can work surrounded by cherished memorabilia that refreshes my spirit, even if my assorted tchotchkes are not revered by the rest of the family.

“Thank God that thing is going down into the basement,” commented my wife, referring to a delightful three-dimensional diorama of Alice Cooper complete with a functional guillotine and a severed head prop. Apparently she has never liked having it in the bedroom, nor did she appreciate the nearby statue of Alfred E. Neuman, the autographed ELP tambourine, or the cardboard cutout of Salvador Dali. Not that she finds all of those objects necessarily repugnant (though I sense the diorama might warrant that categorization), but I guess she never envisioned such items persisting among our bedroom decor even as we live through our forties. No longer must she seek slumber within an environment that evokes an adolescent boy’s bedroom. Instead, we shall have a basement office that evokes an adolescent boy’s bedroom. Read More

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