My Beautiful Wickedness


Unexpected pleasures
July 2, 2008, 9:34 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

We all got sick of painting at roughly the same time yesterday and took off for the ballpark for our first live game of the summer.  Our team lost, 4-3, but considering that they’d been down 4-1 going into the 9th, it was a pretty good last minute effort.  Our first pitcher was pretty good but the middle-relief guys struggled; the only standout last night was our second baseman, Ronald Ramirez. I don’t know how he’s doing overall, but based only on last night’s performance, I wouldn’t be surprised if he got moved up to Double A before long. Gotta hand it to the Vermont Lake Monsters, though – their defensive play was really above par for the typical Single A experience.

We were a day late for the Jerry Jennings bobblehead giveaway. Instead, we got to see Joe Bruno (our reputedly corrupt and perpetually under investgation Senate Majority Leader) throw out the first pitch.  He’s a vigorous old man of the Jack Palance mold — was an Army boxing champ, a construction boss before he went into politics, and he still can throw a strike.  He’s “stepping down” (reputedly a deal between himself and the Feds to avoid indictment) and not running for reelection. He’s a pretty typical New York politician — he secured money for my kid’s school gymnasium and shook $14 million from the state budget to build the stadium we were sitting in so me and mine have directly benefitted from his above-the-law and under-the-table doings.  I suspect that whatever the benefit to me, the benefit to himself and his cronies has been a thousand times greater. I think he’d look pretty good in stripes. 

Well…back to painting. We took the ugly louvered doors off of the cubbyhole that we’ve been using for Kid’s art cabinet and voila! With a fresh coat of super-white, it’s going to be an awesome built-in bookcase.  In the other houses on the block, I’d seen that this was originally a barrister case, so it’s not such a surprise. Maybe next year we’ll get the glass doors put back on it. Until then, though, a new coat of paint will do a lot to make it look better.

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2 Comments so far
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OK, I’m going to sound ignorant here. What is a barrister case?

Comment by Slartibartfast

That’s the trade name for a bookcase composed of individual boxes with individual glass doors that scissor in on each shelf, sometimes with a posting shelf in between that you can pull out to lay reference books on. More generically, it’s a name given to any bookcase that has glass fronted doors. Lawyers used them to keep their books from getting all dusty but on display, hence the name. Ours had swing-out doors and sits across from where the coal-burning fireplace is (though the coal hearth has long been covered up by drywall), so they clearly needed the crud protection on their shelving.

In an interesting historical note, the barrister case was patented in 1907 by Frederick Hale — right about the time that domestic labor was getting hard to find and expensive for middle-class homes. My house was constructed in 1914. I’m really impressed by how fine a home this was for its day and how much a middle-class butcher with 13 kids could afford.

Comment by bridgett




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