Larkin Was No Lark

As Buzzy conversations go, it started out fairly innocuous. The lady and her son had come into the Store for drinks and a snack. As she paid for their purchases, the lady pointed to the Larkin desk situated behind the counter and said “Oh, you have a Larkin. I have one too.” I then told her the story how Pam and I picked it up at an estate sale never knowing that it was a Larkin until we had had it refinished and were told of its high regard as an antique. (For a previous post I did on this (click here.) I also told her how through the years several folks had recognized and commented about it.

As her son took a seat at the end of the bar to eat his snack and drink his soda. the lady then told me about the Larkin that her grandmother owned and how much she liked it as a child sitting at it and rearranging her grandmother’s things in and under the desk. She pointed out that mine was missing a piece of cloth on the front of the lower shelf that served as a curtin that concealed the contents on the shelf. She instructed me to look above the shelf and I should see a rod for the curtin. I did so and sure enough she was correct:

I then asked the lady if the Larkin she now owned was her grandmother’s. I could tell by the way she frowned and said “No” that this was a bad subject with and for her. She went on to inform me that her grand mom had passed and that Larkin was now with her Mom in Florida. She followed up with “My Grandmother knew how much I loved that desk and she left it to me; but my Mom and I had a falling out and I never got it.”

Looking back on our conversation, I now wish that I had asked her about the current Larkin she now owns and where and how she had obtained that one. However, curiosity got the better of me and I asked her “What was the falling out with your Mom all about?” Without hesitating she said “My father abused my son and when I called him out on it he denied it. My Mom and my Sister both took his side and as a result we haven’t spoken in 27 years.”

Not knowing what to say after that disclosure, I was pretty sure I wasn’t doing any followup questions about all this, so I hesitated saying anything as she continued. “However, it all worked out for the best because my son here with me is autistic and is 5 years younger than my son that my father abused. If I hadn’t done something then, it would have gotten much worse because this son was not talking at the time and wouldn’t have said anything about it if my father had done anything to him.” I said something about in life you do what you have to do. However, the real deal, bottom line was – I didn’t really know what the hell to say to her after all that.

Following some more chit chat about where she now lives, she said goodbye and her and her son made their way out of Buzzy’s. As they did so, I turned to look at the Larkin, shook my head and thought “Well you sure took us down a dark alley there didn’t you?”

Sad song then for you. Rod Stewart had the big hit with this song but it was originally recorded in 1971 by its author Danny Whitten when he was with Crazy Horse. Listen for Nils Lofgren doing the backup vocals.

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