October 28, 2011

The Closet

































My room is the closet. I've lived with my hippie friends three times, and I've stayed in a variety of rooms, but never the closet. I've heard tales of watching the hummingbirds come to the feeder outside the window and other enjoyable experiences, like napping, in the tiniest of rooms. The closet is the first room on the left at the top of the staircase. It was originally the bathtub and shower portion of the third-floor bathroom. Then somehow cement fell down the drain, and the tub no longer worked. A community member at the time, John, remodeled it into a nook of a room with a slim loft bed. This was about 1980. John didn't sleep in the room. It was more of a showcase piece. People just started living in it. These days beneath the loft is a dresser and a built-in trunk with a trap door that John originally fashioned to be a desk with a swinging tabletop. The space beneath the loft has undergone many transformations. The room itself attracts much in the way of decoration. Sam hung the bird feeder outside the window a few years ago. Sybilla painted the walls, floor and door a couple years ago. Before I moved into the closet this week, Mitchell was living here. Someone will stay here after me.

I plan to live in the commune through the end of the year. I'm grateful for what is my fourth stay here since 2006. I am diligently working on my animal shelter story and expect it to publish in December. I will keep you posted. I'm looking forward to talking more about putting it together. Meantime, I may write a little about this alternative lifestyle I will be participating in for the next couple months. And the house we all live in.

53 comments:

Lady*♥*Fiona said...

Very interesting read, Ed! Sometimes I look at the size of people's closets and often think they could transform it into a bedroom :D

Good luck on your December publication and I look forward to viewing the pictures when you post them :)

Have a great weekend!

oceangirl said...

Tell us your stories from that room at the top of the stairs.

She Writes said...

I am all about simplicity. Bring it on.

me said...

How interesting, Ed! I look forward to reading more about your lifestyle. :)

Shawna (arbitrarymeaning.blogspot.com)

darlin said...

Good for you to have your own space, it sounds quaint. I'm also looking forward to seeing photos. I was reading something a while back about small spaces, some of the top living quarters for some of the rich and maybe not quite so famous in New York are living in around 500-600 total living space. The prices they pay for these spaces is astronomical, they also pay someone a pretty penny to come in and decorate their spaces... that's cheating! lol And I think my home is small, it's smaller than most but it suits me just fine and there's less to clean.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Claudia said...

smiles..sounds cool...looking forward to reading more ed

Jill said...

I look forward to reading more and seeing photos.

Wishing you well on your upcoming publication!

Brian Miller said...

nice...i am looking forward to reading about it ed...love these stories and the characters you meet along the way...best wishes on the december release as well....

New End Studio said...

A clean, dry, warm, safe place surrounded by friends and sympaticos- sounds terrific. Best wishes for the Dec launch!

Marion said...

I love your space and how you so lovingly describe it for us.

As a little girl I used to hide in closets with my books and a flashlight. I'd made a cozy little pallet and read to my heart's content until some adult began calling my name, searching for me. Oh, the comfort of a cozy, small space! Thanks for sharing this, Ed. I can't wait for the photos to come. xo

ayala said...

I am looking forward to reading more, Ed. Best wishes on your continuing adventure.

hedgewitch said...

My husband has a book called Tiny Houses, small spaces fascinate him, and because they're small, they often get a much more efficient and creative treatment--I'm always reminded of yurts and teepees, very complete but simple spaces. Yours sounds very cool. And your story takes me back to my own commune days where we all tried to be grown ups in a new and a better way--very encouraging to hear people still are carrying that on. Look forward to the pics and good luck with your story.

suvaiba said...

wow, this is interesting... i am just trying to imagine and do post the pictures soon i am really looking forward to it..! :)

Pat Hatt said...

haha I guess a space is a space no matter how small. Should be interesting to hear your adventures that bloom from the small room.

EcoGrrl said...

i have started thinking about the history of the space that i rent out to people in my home - i bought 3 bedrooms and it's just me, one sits empty with some storage in it, everything else in the basement is empty, so for the past 2 years i rent it out for folks in a transient space, needing a place to hang their hat for a month or two, and for the most part have enjoyed it. to see what they have and haven't done with it in the time here is interesting. it's furnished because of them - one left her beautiful ikea bed, another his lamps, another her desk, and voila! only one in two years has tried to make it 'homey'. the rest were boys, ahem. :) every time someone leaves i smudge the room, and am grateful.

Carol Riggs said...

Fascinating! You're a little like Harry Potter, who (in the novel) lived in the storage closet under the stairs. :) All you need is a space to write and sleep, right? But it's great there's a window to make it less claustrophobic. Best of luck with your animal shelter story!!!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

How bizarre. I once slept in a closet for a couple of months. It was large and okay for the short term. I never thought I'd meet someone else who'd done that. :)

SuzyQ said...

Look forward to reading more! Small spaces seem to absorb aspects of the characters that dwell in them. I like small living areas, they are cosy, functional and encourage simple living. They also encourage you to get out more :)Which is good for a homebody like me.
(suzy@somewhereamelody)

Jannie Funster said...

i LIKE THE TRAP DOOR IDEA!!

Oh sorry, i ess i was allcaps there.

and now typing with left hand only while drying hair with right. and alternating.

smiles...

was it leftover cement from carmine's shoe job that clogged the drain?

smiles...

well any closet would be a respite, as long as it has a window to the world. and humming birds.

living the life of art in bohemia, eh?

sound fiiine.

ox

LOLA said...

Interesting, Ed. I couldn't do it, but I look forward to your photos and reading more about it.

Love,
Lola

Little Ms. Fun said...

You are very inspirational! Most people are all talk. It's refreshing to hear an actual experience instead of the usual false hope.

I can't wait to hear more and learn all about your experience.

Mary said...

Ed, I have often admired people who have lived alternatively. I will look forward to your commune tales and to your book. I am excited about both.

LOLA said...

Oh. It just occurred to me: Is this your way of telling us you are gay and in the closet? Because I think it's o.k. to come out.

Love,
Lola

Amanda Suzanne said...

I know what closet you're talking about! I've been in it before and I'm not quite sure how people actually sleep and dress in there! Must have to be super skinny for that action.

I'm glad to know that this is not your coming out of the closet post, however, that comment is hilarious!

urban butterfly said...

Interesting! I'm looking forward to reading how all this turns out :)

Kathy G said...

Looking forward to more!

♫♪♥PhilO♥♪♫ said...

Interesting read :)
You write about hings that I can't even think about :D

light208 said...

Intriguing. It will be interesting to see pictures. I hope work on the story progresses well.

Yvonne Osborne said...

The way you describe this hole in the wall makes it seem cozy. The birdfeeder outside the window draws it complete. As long as I had a window I would be content. And space to write and to be alone. What else does does one need? I would like to see pictures. You make me want an alternative lifestyle.

Geraldine said...

Keep us posted Ed. What an interesting life you live. I couldn't manage sleeping in a room that small, I'm very clausterphobic but it what a unique way to remodel such a small space. I remember the divided bathroom in my grandmother's house many years ago. The bathtub room was long and narrow and now I can imagine it with a small bed etc..

Hope you have a great week, G

Claudia said...

love the pics, great view and what an individual and creative space..

cj Schlottman said...

ed,

These photos are wonderful, and I love your space! Can't wait to see and hear more about it.

Honestly, You Rock! Remind me so much of my late (Hippie) brother, John.

Namaste..........cj

Debbie said...

what a cool space, creative and free spirited!!

you left the kindest comment for jill at chillin with jill, which brought me here. so glad i stopped in, it feels real cozy here!!

Carol Riggs said...

LOVE the painting! The tree on the ceiling and the designs on the floor. Excellent. How fun. I'd like to decorate something like that, to go crazy with paint and creativity. :) Enjoy your little space. Nice window!

oceangirl said...

Oh Ed, the room at the top of the stairs is also the room at the top of the world.

If I ever get to LA again, I hope to be able to visit this special house and community.

Wine and Words said...

35 comments Ed??? Seriously. You do know I am getting annoyed and breaking all my anti social rules just to be here, eh? *sigh*

Okay. I want to tell you that when I was a little girl, (what I can remember of her, through my 18th year), I would lock myself in the bathroom (well there was no lock as previous posts have attested to) but I would try to bar the door with the open drawer and I would imagine that the bathroom was my home. I would figure out how to fit all the creature comforts within the small drawers, cupboards and tub, and knit myself a cozy place where I would feel safe. I might love your closet Shutter Bug. Well, I think I already do.

EcoGrrl said...

ahh, i came back for pix and was not disappointed but i'm with wine&words - you so populurrrr heehee

Daydreamertoo said...

At least you have a room. ;)
I love that you have taken the negative side and totally wiped it out by seeing all the positive about it.
Glad you have a home to live in that is safe and friendly too.
Congratulations on the book Ed. Always see the best and you'll only get the best, even if it is a closet, for now. Things can only get better.
LOL
Wanna know what that capatcha thingie says:... LOL
fooked..no lie! hahaha I think that's hilarious.

Mary said...

Coming back another time looking for more writing here. Just have to say when I was young I always thought it would be cool to live in a commune. Also, that perhaps all a person needs can be kept in a place as small as a closet. I admire you for writing a book.

Eva Gallant said...

Good luck with your book publication. In the meantime, I hope you aren't claustrophobic!

Birdie said...

hi. your journey sounds an interesting one & you sound like you enjoy it (love that). the pictures are gorgeous. just love love the tree on the ceiling and the view out of the window :-) the quote, the tiles i understand you are coming back. lot's of inspiration and good vibes with your animal shelter story & with publishing it!

forgetmenot said...

Sounds like "college life" revisited. Actually, many people look back on those days and that kind of lifestyle as the best time of their lives. Good luck with your publication--I hope all goes well. Keep us updated. Mickie

Joshua said...

Sometimes I wish I had a closet to retreat to when the family gets to me. Also reminds me of a place I used to work in Hell's Kitchen. Good times.

Pop Champagne said...

very interesting read, I love how the rooms are all so unique!

My Inner Chick said...

ed,
---i can imagine you living in this unique place...looking out the window watching the hummingbirds while writing your poetry. Xx
Lovely.

Snowbrush said...

It looks like a nice place to stay, and they must enjoy having you or else they wouldn't keep taking you back.

Su-sieee! Mac said...

It's a closet anyone with imagination and adventure would want to live in.

Punk Chopsticks said...

AWESOME!!! That swhere I want to live when I grow up.
I love the gandhi quote! It's my life's motto doncha know xD

Elisabeth Hirsch said...

So interesting. It sounds like such a romantic venture.

♫♪♥PhilO♥♪♫ said...

I love the first picture :)

Movies on my Mind said...

Better to be out of the closet than in... oh, my wit amazes even me at times(!)

wolfsrosebud said...

cozy can be good for any starving artist... thanks for sharing your closet space with a dozen more people

The Empress said...

How can you not be changed, right?

Especially someone like you, who feels his environment.

Sights that are read with words.