A Place to Put the Posterior

Everyone should have a place to sit and be comfortable.  I have a chair that I spend most of my sitting hours in, but I’ll bet my chair is not like yours.  First, it’s a folding chair; second, it wears a shirt.  I have a recliner and a couch in my living room, but if I want to relax, I prefer the folding chair in my bedroom.  It doesn’t sound luxurious – and it isn’t – but it fills a need.

I bought the chair so that I would have a place to sit that I did not have to share with anyone else.  I needed it to be lightweight and easy move around as I used to take it around to various rooms till I decided to give it a permanent home in my bedroom.  The chair’s best feature – the cushions – is also its biggest drawback.  The cushions are fabric, and fabric is difficult to clean.  One of my earliest memories with the chair is giving it a good spray down/wipe down with rubbing alcohol while watching “Monk” on TV.  Ironic, isn’t it?  A metal chair would be so much easier to clean, but who wants to sit on metal?

It seemed as though I was always bumping into the chair or accidentally hitting it with some object I was carrying.  I felt like I was constantly spraying the chair.  The easiest way to move the chair a short distance was to drag it by the leg with my foot.  I suppose it was inevitable that one day the chair would fall over, and it did.  I pulled it upright and gave it a good spray down.  Then the day came when it fell over again, but this time was different.  The inside of the back of the chair – the spot where I rest my back – landed against the small wastebasket I kept in my room.  To make the picture clearer, the chair and the trash can were spooning.  Instead of quickly picking it up as I did after the first fall, I stood staring at it.  Was this the end of my chair?  I considered hauling it outside to be discarded.  It had touched a garbage can; now it belonged in a garbage can.  But where would I sit until I could find a new chair?  It might be a few days.

Germophobes are inventive when they need to be.  After giving it some thought, I tried covering it with a pillowcase as a temporary fix, but the pillowcase shifted around too much; it wasn’t the right size.  I started searching for something else to cover the chair.  I looked in my closet, and staring me in the face was a shirt that I didn’t really like to wear.  It was a button-up shirt, so it was much easier to drape over the back of the chair than the pillowcase.  It wasn’t perfect; it wanted to shift every time I moved, but, again, it wasn’t as bad as the pillowcase.  So this is the method I am still using to keep my chair clean and usable.  If anyone has a suggestion as to how to keep the shirt in place, feel free to post it as a comment here, please.

So, for the last couple of years, my chair has sported a salmon-pink shirt, a light teal blue one, and a long-sleeved mauve shirt.  It is important to have some backups in case one has to be tossed in the dirty laundry.  From time to time I consider getting a new chair, but this system seems to be working for now.  Until then, my chair will have its own wardrobe.


About admin

I am a female in my early 40's who has been dealing with OCD since age 10 and a fear of germs since 14.
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One Response to A Place to Put the Posterior

  1. Eli says:

    I assume you’re just draping the button-down shirt over the back of the chair, maybe unbuttoned and facing backwards. There might not be a good way to keep such a shirt in place. I’d suggest that you get a big t-shirt or sweatshirt (which is made of stretchy knit material), the biggest you can find, and pull it over the back of the chair, as if the chair is wearing the shirt. That would keep the shirt from moving around.

    In an earlier post, you mentioned the intense cleaning that you have to do after taking your car to the mechanic. Depending on the type of seats that you have in your car, you might consider pulling a t-shirt/sweat-shirt over the seat before taking the car in. Or you might try putting a large plastic bag over the whole seat, taping/tying it in place, and then taking the bag off after you get the car back. (Save the bag for garbage disposal.) If anyone asks about the bag over the seat, you could say, “It’s for my allergies.” That’s always a good answer in this kind of situation; most people understand allergies, but not germophobia/OCD.

    You’re already making good use of baggies, but bigger bags might help your situation, as they have helped me. You can buy various sizes of clear plastic bags (4 gal., 7-10 gal., etc.) from warehouse stories or on the web, and use them for storing stuff that gets contaminated until you can clean them, or to store stuff to keep it from getting contaminated. (From a warehouse store: “Clear Low-Density Trash Bags” 55-60 gallon capacity 100 count for about $43 dollars, less than two quarters per bag. That may be too big, but they also have 40-45 gal. 250 ct for about $70, 30 gal. 250 ct for about $51, 16 gal. 500 ct for about $40, and 7-10 gal. 500 ct, for about $38. They don’t have the 3-4 gallon size, which is the size used to line typical individual office trash cans, but there’s a website that sells 4-Gallon Clear Trash Bags, 2,000 per Case, for about $25. That’s a really great value, and the bags come in really handy. They’re not super thick, so you have to be a little careful with them. If you want thicker bags or don’t want to buy such large quantities, you can just buy, for example, Glad 4 Gallon Indoor Small Garbage Bags 30 ea for about $8 at a discount store; they’re thicker but they’re white rather than clear.) If something drops on the floor, I pick it up with a paper towel and drop it into one of the 4 gal. size bags for later cleaning. Or I keep it quarantined in the bag indefinitely. It’s a lot easier to carry stuff around in the plastic bag, because you don’t have to keep it away from your body or wear a glove.

    People might think, “Wow, that’s a lot of waste and trash, with all the paper towels or napkins, gloves, and plastic bags.” For us, it’s a necessary thing because of the germs and dirt. As to the amount of trash, a landfill is a beautiful thing. Before the landfill, it’s a dirty canyon full of nasty stinging insects, venomous snakes, and coyotes just waiting to snatch up a baby, but afterwards, after it’s been filled up and landscaped, it’s a nice golf course or park for people to enjoy!

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