The Indian bedspread. Cheaper than drywall.

Well, that’s a hoot ‘n’ a holler!

Two months ago, when I started searching for new digs, I responded to a guy’s craigslist ad seeking a roommate. Despite repeated tries, never heard back so moved on.

Never heard back ’til yesterday. An outta-the-blue email. “You ever find a room?”

Uhhhh, actually, yes. We’re to formalize the deal tomorrow.

Still enough time to back out if a better deal appears but we gotta move quickly. Like meet today.

Then he tells me about the sitch.

A 2-bedroom apartment. His roommate’s a gal from his ad back in November.

This dude’s a hackysacker, artist and traveler. He’s gone a lot. Apparently he and the roommate are feeling the burden of splitting the rent.

Hence the appeal of a third roommate.

In a 2-bedroom apartment?

Hackysacker Dude’s got a fix.

“My roommate keeps her room. You’d take my room since I travel a lot.”

And Hacksacker’s bedroom when he’s back?

Bemused by his creative cleverness, he chuckles: “An Indian spread hung from the ceiling in the living room.”

{flashback to my Berkeley college days}

I laugh. A creative solution, I give ‘I’m that.

“Sounds crazy, huh. You probably wouldn’t be interested. Sounds crazy to me too, I’m 42.”

“Nah, not crazy. Hey, I’ve got a hippie past. Been there did that in my 20s. I’m not there anymore.”

I didn’t tell him I turn 60 in two months.

A friendly engaging chat … but a third sometimes-roommate making his bedroom of the living room courtesy of an India bedspread … not my bag at this age … though, as I tell him, I’d consider it if I were desperate. And I’m not.

Our chat ‘n’ his sitch got me thinking.

Like Hackysacker Dude perhaps, I’m a traveler. Not financially independent. What would I do in his situation? How would I maintain a rented space to return to while also easing the burden of rent on myself and roommate(s) when away?

The Indian bedspread – 1,001 uses. Who here hasn’t used one or seen it used once in your lifetime? “It can do everything but fix your car.” Okay, exaggeration. Still. Why, just to scratch the surface, a spread:

  • covers up damaged or ugly walls
  • protects couches ‘n’ furniture from pet hair
  • stands in as a ground spread at picnics and beaches
  • helps tote objects
  • drapes over more windows than we can count
  • ditto tables and bicycles, motorcycles and things stored in an attic
  • and, naturally, divides more rooms than we’ll ever know

I feel for Hackysacker Dude’s pickle.

And though at 59 I’m not interested in revisiting my Berkeley-university era, my inner hippie is still alive and appreciates Hackysacker’s efforts. In fact, in his sandals, I might well be hitting Cost Plus for a giant fabric print.

Had I gotten his address — to a place I’ll never live — why, I’d even gift Hackysacker Dude a ‘spread for happy living, happier trails, happiest hackysacking. Perhaps this one, elephants symbolizing good luck ‘n’ prosperity in India …


The mighty elephant, kin of the beloved Ganesha


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