And what a lair it was. For all intents and purposes it was a hideous mess, or at least it had evolved into one. Add chronic illness to an already messy collector and you get a personalized cluster fuck. You could barely get around in there, but that was the way he liked it. He set booby traps that you had to maneuver around to get to him so he wouldn’t be snuck up on. He was terrified that he would react before he knew who it was. The martial arts/military training were real.
The place did, however, have character, just like he did. The corner he used most held this computer, his desk was cluttered with personal stuff, to include a small turtle collection and a hula girl that graced the cake at his first bachelor party. Nat would giggle when she registered the titties that peeked out from under her grass dress. I didn’t like that so much, but alas, this is about him, rather than me. -Above, hung an original piece of art chalked by Maiden and a picture drawn in junior high by his number two son. To the left was an office type room divider. On it hung an 8x10 picture of the two of us (taken in a booth at the fair in some previous life), and…layers of Nat’s handmade art, covered in hearts, rainbows and rudimentarily drawn family members beyond number. To the right, on his closet door hung a map from a video game, World of Warcraft? and a Punisher poster. Right there were his snacks and treats for the kids, woppers and sour skittles, tigers milk bars and his “special apple juice” and 7up. How many times did they fall for that one before the kids figured out a suck off the top of daddy’s glass was always bad idea?
Beyond the divider there was a maple gun case, stocked… with a knickknack shelf mounted on one end of it (cluttered with old toys, rubber cars and the like, bank statements and chap stick). He loved toys, and the wall above his T.V. was plastered in a plethora of unopened Todd McFarland creations and others, including “Spawn” and Punisher collections. There were larger pieces in there as well, including several ceramic Punisher busts and a particularly hideous Alien figurine. Just looking at them made him happy.
There were two jigsaw puzzles mounted on the wall as well. One was assembled by his grandparents during the first year of their marriage. Grandpa had it framed and said that if they could work together on that puzzle, they would surely work together in the future. The other was a Star Wars poster, mounted by his sister. I think his number two and three sons assembled it at her house.
He had a small reading corner set up too. Next to the chair, were a few boxes of his comics and some of the books on his list, misc. junk and mail, etc.
There was of course a bed too. Oh how I miss being his Friday… Yes, he really was one amazing lover. (Sorry kids). Sadly, at the end, that bed became a symbol of his lingering illness. Number three son and my little ones and I stabbed it to death with some of his very sharp daggers. The little ones and I drug it down the stairs and out to the dumpster while # three commenced falling apart. I didn’t see him act like himself for months after that.
We used to refer to life as Mr. Toads Wild Ride. And oh what a ride it was, thus, I always liked the image of the redhead wearing garters near the top left of his blog header.