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How Many Pillows Is Too Many Pillows?

How it all began

With nothing to do, nowhere to go, and socially locked down, I now share more household responsibilities, including making the bed. Bed-making has opened a new insight into my life: I have a new crusade. Not the bed so much as the bed pillows. For much of my life, a single pad was more than enough. Then, with marriage, a second pillow appeared, as you might expect. 

But from there, things went crazy. Some pillow-pushing design czar in the New York or Paris fashion district decreed that American bedrooms must resemble the seraglio in the Sultan’s harem. The fashion fascists demand that you pile pillows of assorted fabrics, shapes, and coordinated colors up to the ceiling. Where do they come up with this crap?

But I don’t live in a harem.

Like you, I don’t live in a harem. My home is bone-chilling, ice-covered granite New England. We live unpretentious lives in our colonial-style homes. No architect or interior decorator would mistake our bedrooms for that of a Persian Pasha or Turkish Sultan. Some say we’re too stingy to buy our clothes or pillows but prefer to inherit them. We like it simple and hope to remain that way.

There are beds on earth that have no pillows. Sultans pile on the pads because they never make a bed. 

Each morning I spend half the time picking up, fluffing up, and positioning seven pillows. That number is growing each time she goes shopping. So I push back. Regardless of what the decorator dictates, neither God nor Allah intended man to do tedious fluff-up labor. 

We must set limits.

I have put my foot down on this pillow plague. Seven pillows are the absolute limit I will fluff in a single day. Any new cushions will be buried under the bed to gather dust. Masculinity, the Minimalist Design School, and Male Liberation demand nothing less.

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About The Author
Barclay Henderson
Barclay Henderson
Born Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1939. (I'm happily still there). I went west to graduate from college, Reed, in Oregon, and then further west to Waseda University, Tokyo. I earned a black belt in Judo in Japan and married my current wife there. I returned to New England and got an MBA at Dartmouth's Tuck School. In 1970 I started my own company, a Benihana of Tokyo franchise, and went on to build 20 more restaurants in the U.S. and Canada. In 2011 I sold out profitably, and we spent time traveling. Minako and I love this country but dreamed of visiting more than 100 foreign lands and continents. We fulfilled that goal last year. The years since retirement have turned out to be an antidote to left-brain analytics of business. I've written two books and a humor blog. I play the oboe in small chamber groups as well as many days as a gym rat working out. The days pass agreeably, but those spent fooling around with the kids and grandkids are the best days.
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