I’m not really sure when it started.
I can’t really put a finger on the day I realized that I have a thing for benches. At some point in my life, I just started to notice that whenever I walked by a bench I tended to sit on it. I would be in the middle of a conversation with someone, walking along a street, and then suddenly they would turn around – mid-sentence – and find me sitting on the bench, swinging my legs.
“Sorry,” I’d say with a big Cheshire grin. “I have a thing for benches”.
It didn’t really matter if it was raining and the other person wanted to run to their car to keep their hair from getting messed up. I just told them I’d catch up.
It didn’t matter if we were going to be late or if we were in the middle of a very serious, vulnerable conversation. It just didn’t matter. I had to sit.
I don’t know what caused this particular neurosis, or if there is a name for it, but I have to sit on a bench when I’m around one. But once I’ve sat on one, I don’t have to go sit on all the rest in the area; that one will give me the fix I need.
Maybe I was a pigeon feeder in a past life, and the fond memory of the birds coming to my feet to eat seeds, bread, and popcorn draws me unknowingly to these interesting pieces of furniture. Maybe my philosophical side yearns to sit, just for a moment, and consider the deeper things in life while my physical side is making its way to the used book store.
I’ve never really known anyone else that has this problem, this “Leg Narcolepsy” that forces me to collapse happily onto a hard, uncomfortable structure. I wouldn’t normally select a long piece of hard wood to sit on, or a cold length of heavy metal. Not my idea of leisure resting. But when it’s a bench I manage to set aside my discomfort for the sheer pleasure of the sit.
So here is my thing with benches, and more to follow, I’m sure. Though very utilitarian and practical, I find them works of art on their own.