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Ephemera: Me & The Dead Kennedys
A lesson in objects
The things you own end up owning you.
Just out of college I bought this fake fireplace, mostly because people referred to it as “the Dead Kennedys fireplace.” Legend had it that this Fiberglas “field stone” thing had once graced the grotty space where the famous punk band rehearsed. The “fire” is a crackling rotating brush and a red light. The mantle is hinged along the back. It lifts to reveal storage space inside.
By 1992 the fireplace was out of my life. Given away, I think. But Fiberglas is forever. Today I found it for sale in a resale shop. In good writing, as in Portland, no object is ever entirely lost.1 It returns again and again. Perhaps the fireplace will now be known as the “Dead Kennedy and Chuck Palahniuk fireplace.” If you’re interested, as of this writing it’s $125 at the Village Merchants, on the back patio.
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It has no curse on it. You can become part of its legend.