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Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Childhood stuff #12 - the pulldown

When I was a kid, we had a big wall unit that seemed to take up the entire living room. It looked something like this –

You can see the edge of our actual wall unit on the left of this photo (yes, that's me in the lovely dress) -

No one seems to have these nowadays, I don’t know, maybe living rooms are getting smaller, or people have just found some other place to store their tat. And our wall unit contained nothing but tat. As far as I can remember, our wall unit generally contained the following –

Old photo albums, containing pictures of the corner of someone’s head at Butlins

Rolls of unused wallpaper

Unused tinsel and various other Christmas decorations

My mother’s collection of scary pot dolls, which would all stare at you, no matter where you were in the room

All the different types of drinks glasses my family owned, which never got used and which were always a bit dusty

Videotapes – we displayed our videos quite proudly in the wall unit. And yes, we did have these –

But storing the real treasure in this cavalcade of crap was the pulldown. The equivalent nowadays would probably be the ‘bits n pieces’ drawer in your kitchen, where you banish old wires, old rolls of film (if you’re in the 1990s), and all the other stuff you can’t bear to look at on a daily basis, yet you can’t bear to let it go.
As a child, I loved jumping up onto the settee so I could reach the pulldown in the wall unit behind it. It seemed to my childish brain that every time I looked in it, it would contain some new wonder to behold, and maybe something I could play with!
These were the things regularly found in our pulldown –

Old pictures, which were so bad they never even made it into the albums, and which would inevitably slither out onto the settee upon opening the pulldown

My dad’s clip on ties, which he sometimes wore to work

Lost pieces of board games

My dad’s Psion organiser

Old Legos I’d lost

Piles of mine and my sisters’ schoolwork

A tub full of old watches and coins

These days, instead of the pulldown, we have a crap drawer and a crap cupboard, since one small space can’t contain all the tat we possess.

 Here is the crap cupboard –

And here is the crap drawer -

As you can see, these two carry on the tradition admirably, but they lose points because I no longer have an excuse to jump on the settee.

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