Our Elmhurst living room was a homage to Mom’s baby grand piano. Scattered sit-upons dotted the remaining space like garden pavers. This may account in part for the fact Dad was an upsitter. He sat up on a couch, a chair. When he nodded off it was hard to tell since he looked about the same.

In contrast, my Uncle Frank was a blatant recliner. In fact he had a big brown one in his living room and made not one attempt to hide his enjoyment of it. Why would he? He was a big fellow with a big chair in a household that loved everything he did, including sleep.

Nobody else sat in his chair, though it could hold 3 or 4 midsized children. His chair was like having the man himself in the room, a man who gave off the warm scent of comfort. Creatures of all ages gathered near Uncle Frank like hands rubbing themselves above a firepot.

Dad didn’t draw others to himself. He didn’t withdraw either. He abided. He was a great abider, kind of like a horse happy in his stall. He was not a ground pawer. He gave off the plain smell of contentment. This made him the object of some suspicion to those who expected more of him.

About Mrs. Fitz

Hello! I'm Michele Fitzpatrick, a Chicago writer. Like our town, a work in progress. As a journalist, teacher and writing coach I think all of us live our stories and sharing them creates moments that remind us we're connected. And that is enough.
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