Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Gravity Style Furnace: Old Man Parker’s Antagonist in A Christmas Story

My all-time favorite Christmas movie is not surprisingly the classic A Christmas Story. I am a big fan of the hard working and very human character of Mr. Parker, Ralphie’s “old man”. According to Ralphie, his dad “was one of the most feared furnace fighters in Northern Indiana”. The Parker’s constant clinking gravity style basement furnace actually was a key character in the movie. On more than one occasion problems with the old furnace sent Mr. Parker to the basement which he soon filled with expletives.

Although beyond enamored with his fanciful leg lamp, Mr. Parker wanted something far more practical for Christmas. His Christmas wish was for a new furnace. Unfortunately, the unwrapping of gifts Christmas morning revealed that only a can of Simonize awaited Mr. Parker. In the end, the old furnace survived to torment poor Mr. Parker for at least another year.

Although we are not in the antique furnace business, Shop 4 Classics does offer reproduction gravity style heat registers similar to the one shown billowing smoke into the Parker’s kitchen. These vintage baseboard heat registers are authentic reproductions of gravity baseboard registers that are common in old homes like the Parker’s residence. They are available in a Cathedral Style Baseboard Register and a Grid Style Baseboard Register. While the old basement furnace may be replaced for something far more reliable, the original charm can be maintained upstairs with reproduction registers. Therefore, if you have resolved to renovate your old home this coming year, consider maintaining its period look with high quality reproductions like the single damper baseboard register.

From all of us at Shop 4 Classics, may all of your Christmas wishes come true.

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