Daddy Cuts More Than a Rug

Hardwood floors and linoleum were the floor surfaces in our house.  At a time when most people had carpet, we didn’t.  Our floors were swept and mopped daily, but in the Spring we had to get down to serious business.  Waxing the living room floor was mine and Nene’s chore.  We got down on hands and knees to apply the paste wax.  Once it dried, we had to go back over it and buff off the wax by hand.  It was a tiresome job, but the reward was in the beauty of the shine that remained for many weeks after.  We were allowed to rearrange the furniture, if we so desired.

Mother loved to rearrange the furniture.  I inherited this trait.  She was particularly bad to change around the furniture in hers and Daddy’s bedroom.  One day, she got into a fit of cleaning and furniture changing in the bedroom.  The main thing she changed was that she pushed the cedar chest to the foot of the bed.  She generally went to bed early, before Dad.  We were sleeping peacefully when we were wakened by a horrible squeal, followed by Daddy hopping around the room yelling “Oooooohhh Lorrrrrddy!”  My sisters and I scurried out of bed and ran to the bedroom.

Mother was laughing!  You see, it was Daddy’s habit to come to bed with the light off, so as not to disturb Mother.  It was also a habit to take a dive for the bed from the foot of the bed.  On this night, he took a dive for the bed, not knowing that Mother had moved that cedar chest to the bottom of the bed.  His long legs didn’t clear the chest!  He hooked his toe right on the latch of the chest.  I’ll never forget the sight of him hopping around on one foot, while holding the other.  I’m sure it was painful, but we laughed anyway.  Poor fella!

It’s nearly spring cleaning time again.  I will be doing some paint-up, fix-up things around my house.  Some furniture will most likely be repositioned.  The incident with Daddy and the cedar chest reminds me to make sure that everyone in the house knows how to find their way around in the dark, and the obstacles that might be in their way.

I learned that:

1. Hard work never hurt anybody, and the payoff shines.

2. If you are going to make big changes, it’s good to tell the people whom they might affect.

3. No matter how hard you fall, you can pick yourself up.

4. Sometimes we stumble around before we find what we are looking for.

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5 Comments on “Daddy Cuts More Than a Rug”

  1. Pat Montgomery Says:

    funny story! I love the life lessons at the end.


  2. Pam,

    Carpet was invented for lazy housewives. That’s what my mother used to say🙂 I remember how she used to get on her hands and knees and mop and wax the floor with some old rags. I always loved the smell when she was finished and the shine was incredible. Now all we have to do is run a vacuum over a rug.

  3. Betty Lynch Says:

    Oh Pam, I can just see your father. Bless his heart. My hubby got in the furniture moving mode this morning. We rearranged our living room. Thanks for sharing your memories!


  4. LOL! Number two is a big one.

  5. feistysideoffifty Says:

    Your poor Papa! I can relate to his pain. Many, many, many years ago, I was coming out of the shower and stubbed my toe on the doorsill of the bathroom. My sister-in-law (around 13 at the time) saw me jumping up and down naked and in pain and laughed so hard she almost fell to the floor. Actually, I was quite a sight because I was seven or eight months pregnant at the time.
    At any rate, I failed to see the humor in all of this until several minutes later when my toe stopped throbbing. But your dad was most likely a far more charitable person than I. Nevertheless, if I might be so bold to add a lesson learned: Don’t laugh too hard at someone hopping around in pain–they might just hobble over and pop you one!


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