Gas Logs

By Brenda S. Brown


This is a tale about the last arrangement to be chosen, or as brother David and I remember the object, the most unappealing of the unattractive.  Years ago, while attending a trade show for the gas industry in Atlanta, our parents decided to place an order for a new innovation in home decoration, gas-fired logs. 
Because they issued an advance notice to their clientele, three attractive sets were sold before they were ever displayed, and others were acquired during the holidays.  Then there was the gentleman farmer who came in late on New Year's Eve and purchased a pricey collection for his wife.  She was disappointed when her sister found a set under her Christmas tree, and she received a vacuum cleaner. 
Although the apparatus didn't provide much heat, the offered convenience appealed to those husbands who were tired of chopping wood and cleaning ash and trash from the fireplaces.  Before long the more appealing ones disappeared and the lesser alluring ones lingered.  Over the winter months the few remaining were rearranged and one unit in particular was pushed toward the back of the display. 
As time progressed, the not-chosen individual was transported from place to place and finally inhabited the far corner of the showroom, virtually forgotten by the workforce. The ones that sold were sleek, this one was chunky; the others were dressed in pleasing colors, this one was shadowy and morose; destined to become a throwaway fixture. 
Then a faithful customer came by the office late one blustery afternoon intending to merely place an order for some propane gas.  Wandering through the showroom she glimpsed the misfit, who by now was gathering dust, and stopped still.  All the various models she inspected, she explained, were too polished, but this was just the creation she envisioned; a diamond in the rough was discovered, and was that day transported to a respectable abode. 
Brenda S. Brown

Brenda S. Brown lives in Baldwin County with Otto, her husband of forty years.  They have two grown sons and daughters by marriage,  Scott and Kimberly Brown and Arlin and Brenda Brown, and four grandchildren; Joshua, Caleb, Catherine and Christen.  Her first manuscript, Precious Gems from Ruby, is complete and awaiting publication. 
She can be reached at

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