Funny about Money

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. ―Edmund Burke

Adventures in Antiquity

…or is it superannuation?

Sorta like this, but a lot nicer…

Yesterday I pushed back in a chair from a desk and bumped a beautiful old floor lamp I’d bought at Restoration Hardware 25 or 30 years ago (!!!!! Really???? Yesterday was 30 years ago?). It tipped over, bashed against a wall, and its handsome milky glass shade thing broke into six or eight pieces.


So now I go to Restoration’s website to see if I can get a replacement glass thing.

Ohhhhhh my goodness! If you want to see ugleee, go over to Restoration Hardware and look at the lamps. Holy mackerel. This stuff exceeds ugly. How on earth do they manage to sell that crap? Ikea design at Tiffany prices!

It has been, admittedly, a long time since I bought the furnishings for my house. I’ve been in this house 16 years and was in the other house (when I bought this stuff, when I had…you remember…a job) about as long. So presumably this thing is around 30 years old. How times have changed.

I just hate  the ugly, uglee interior design that’s the style now. Penitentiary gray on every surface. And industrial furnishings that look like they belong on a factory floor. Or in a prison, to go with the lovely walls. The stuff is so hideous! HOW do they get young people to buy it? And the COST! You simply would not believe what Restoration Hardware is charging for the ugliest floor lamps you can imagine.

Or can’t imagine…who would dream this stuff up?

So I call Lamps Plus on the phone and learn they may be able to get a glass shade thingie to replace the deceased.

This looks a LOT like it… If you have to ask, no, you can’t afford it.

They closed the Lamps Plus near the ’Hood, that outlet having been located in what is now a Ghost Mall. The nearest outlet is almost to Sun City — a good forty-minute drive from here.

And you can tell that they cater to the Sun City set, because they still carry a few lamps that are not uglier than sin. They do have lamps that are very similar to the antique(!!) RH model, and it is remotely possible that a shade for one of those will fit the deceased. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised but what whoever was manufacturing the old RH lamps simply took their custom over to Lamps Plus. They have a similar lamp for around $120, a far cry from the $450++++ RH is gouging its customers.

My concern is that if I have to buy another lamp, it will come with a socket that works only with the horrid new LED lighbulbs. I simply abominate the quality of the light those damn things emit, and I have a large stockpile of incandescent lights which I hope will last until the end of my life. Home Depot still sells them, though you can’t get them in three-way switch design.

The bulb didn’t break, so I took it out and set it aside.

But… Like any retailer, Lamps Plus doesn’t open until 10 a.m.

This looks just like it! Only without the ungainly lamp… Walmart, $89.40 for the whole contraption. If only it weren’t out of stock…

I had to be back in North Central by 12:30 to show up down at the church for Front Desk duty. Eighty minutes of traffic-trekking plus God only knows how much palavering would be cutting it very close, especially if I imagined I’m going to get anything resembling lunch.

If I arrive at their door at 10 a.m., spend half an hour yapping with them, then fly back into town without incident (good luck with that: wherever you’re goin’ in the Valley, you can’t get there from here…), I figured get back to the Funny Farm by 11:30 or noon. Barring the usual road work, wrecky-poos, gun battles, and whatnot. {sigh}

Just what I needed to make my day!

Along about 9:30 I start the trek westward journey. After a 45-minute trek through crazy-making traffic, I arrive at this place, the nearest Lamps Plus.

They didn’t have a clue. But the manager, I hafta hand it to her, tried everything she could think of to come up with SOMEPLACE to find a new glass lampshade thingie. Basically, that amounted to perusing the same websites I’d already looked at.

She did, however, tell me a replacement has to have a kind of a “collar” on it to fit into the fixture: it can’t be shaped like a shallow dog dish.

She suggested Phoenix Lamps — 30 minutes on the OTHER side of town.

Phoenix Lamps caters to the antiques connoisseur set. Last time I went in there, prices were blinding and deafening, both. On the other hand…I guess a 25- or 30-year-old light IS an antique. Forgodsake.

We have Hinkley’s, also very expensive. But at least it’s close: just down the road from AJs. Actually, I figure could take the thing by there after I escape from the church office this afternoon… Since by now I’ve missed lunch, this will mean a nice late dinner, too. I’ll be faint by the time I get back home.

French’s Electric mostly caters to the trade — electricians, I mean. But…they do have some interesting fixtures in their shop. And they’re real pro’s. If there’s an answer to be had, they either already know it or can find it forthwith. Couldn’t hurt to ask those guys, I guess.

And finally, there’s the Wizard of Odz, a little repair shop way to hell & gone back up on Bell Road, founded many a year ago by an eccentric fella who just plain loved lights and old lamps. He used to be, truly, a wizard — could fix anything. But that place changed hands, and more recent Yelp reviews are far from positive… And lo! A web search to see if negativity still holds forth reveals the place has  closed down. Too bad…

Welp, my inclination is to make a run on French’s or Hinkley’s this afternoon — I get off at 4 p.m. and both emporia are open till 5:30. French’s is a drive, westbound toward the suburbs just as rush hour hits its height. However, if they can either order a new one that looks OK or rejigger the lamp so it can take a fabric shade, they’ll be a whole lot cheaper than Hinkley’s.

Godlmighty, this has turned into a fiasco. A new, even vaguely comparable lamp will cost around $260 to $300. Well. Except for the one Walmart is peddling for $89.40…you can imagine about how long that thing will last. 😀

Seems like a lamp repair dude ought to be able to take out the socket and replace it with a socket array that holds a lampshade harp, thereby allowing me to use a fabric shade. Not as nice, for sure, but at least the lamp would survive.

It’s enraging. I mean, really: a lamp purchased in your own lifetime — when you were solidly ensconced in middle age, for godsake — is an “antique”? Seriously?

Author: funny

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One Comment

  1. Hi! Have you checked Ebay?

    Option B: We had a similar issue a few years ago and found one at a store that sells estate cleanout items, if you have anything like that in your area. It was $5!