Simple Object

During the Covid-19 pandemic of 2020, life had change for humans all across the world.  What started as an outbreak in a Chinese city, within a few months spread across the world.  Suddenly, everyday life for humans around the world changed drastically.  Routines things such as trips to the grocery store, gym, and even traveling to work for some came to a stop. One of the things I use to do frequently was go to the gym, so when it closed, I order a resistance band set to keep me in shape.  I know many are wondering how this has any significance to me, let me explain.  As for many people, this pandemic was a difficult time for me.  My aunt died from Covid early July, me and her son grew up like brothers so you can imagine how close we were. Then a couple of weeks later, I had the virus.  At first, I felt that I would get over it quickly, but then for over the course of two months I kept getting positive tests back.  My family and I began to worry, because we just buried a family a few weeks ago.  Sitting isolated in my home I began to wonder things, like when will I get over this.  Due to the uncertainty of this virus, it was hard for me to remain calm and positive. I needed something to take my mind off this situation, that is where the resistance bands set come into play.  The set came with five resistance bands, five loop bands, and a jump rope. It is made out of latex rubber, its purpose is intended for a full body workout.  The bands consist of five colors, black, red, blue, green, and yellow ranging from ten to fifty pounds of resistance. This product is made in China, and it is a very common product that can be used by any age ranging from teen to adult. When I was going through my situation, this was something to take my mind off it.  But it became a routine thing for me, it took my mind out of a depressing state.  I began looking into ways to improve my overall health, even though it is not bad. I know to most people this does not have a significant meaning, but it did to me.  I keep my bands put up in my laundry room, I still use because it I’m still not comfortable going back outside.  I do find it funny how something so simple became a big part of my exercise routine and help me take my mind off the negative thoughts.  Looking back, I would like people to understand how these simple objects was therapeutic to me and how it help get me through my situation.

Object Biography

Due to the incredibly tough position todays environment has put us in we have been forced to change our daily routines and basically life as we know it. Before COVID-19 I did not really use that much technology. I prefer to either be outside with friends doing actives such as hunting or fishing but due to this worldwide pandemic my friends and I have not been able to do the actives that we so much enjoy. The item I chose to do my blog post on would be my laptop. My laptop is a MacBook Pro I purchased with the help of my dad my Junior Year of high school, so it makes this object around five years old. The laptop has measurements of 13.3 inches by 15.4 inches. The screen itself is roughly 13 inches and has an incredible display of quality.  My laptop has extreme value to me right now because every facet of our lives revolves around technology now that we are forced to stay indoors and social distance. Before quarantine I only used my laptop for things such as schoolwork and searching the internet for hunting or fishing gear and supplies. However, in today’s world we are forced to do everything remotely from home on our laptops. Normally my laptop will stay perfectly positioned on my desk so that it can be plugged into its charger if it is needed to be charged. When I need to transport my laptop to a different location, I carefully place the laptop in the case I have purchased for it. The case is extremely important because without the case my laptop would be subject to getting broken which would impede my success of doing schoolwork. Once the laptop is carefully placed in the case, I then place my case into my backpack which I use to transport my laptop to the different locations in which I would need to use it. Reflecting back on this object I have come to realize that currently my entire life revolves around this 13 by 15-inch piece of metal that controls my entire life. Without this object our society as we know it today would sadly crash. In fact, just about every single business in today’s world is run by using computers and other forms of advance technology that allows us to communicate remotely with one another without contact, which is extremely important with the worldwide pandemic that is happening. Other than just being able to help someone do business and keep commerce available, my laptop allows me to be able to communicate with people like my mom, dad, and grandmother. Since they are older and multiple hours away the facetime feature on my laptop allows me to remotely communicate and video chat with my family without having to come in contact with them and potentially spread COVID-19. So in today’s world my most important object in my life has become my laptop due to the fact that I need it in order to stay in touch with everyone in my life during this pandemic and also be able to continue to do remote learning so that I can receive a degree from Auburn University.

Object Biography

An insignificant object

      Nowadays people are surrounded by natural and artificial objects which either serve a purpose in their lives or as pure decoration, people would sometimes utilize the object and harness the benefits within, while others simply sat on top of shelves covered in dust. what I have chosen is an object which is invaluable to me in my daily routine—My Laptop.

      This specific laptop was made in the United States by Hewlett-Packard group, which is a computer making giant who shares the market with Dell and MSI. Since the laptop was deemed a “Gaming Laptop” it came in black with red lighting illuminating around the keyboard. It was put together by joining the monitor with the gaming inspired keyboard which took place on an assembly line. Although it might be outdated as gaming laptops have developed rapidly through the years, it is still one of the most sought-after products on the market. When I first purchased it three years ago I did not dare to think that such an electronic device would have a significant meaning to me since almost every single paper I ever wrote was stored in it. It was an essential part of me so I would also keep a personal diary to not forget what I’m thinking now, sometimes these impulsive ideas might become a task I need to complete. During the COVID-19 era the laptop greatly increased my ability to do the assignments for school while also having fun in the process, much of the hand writing had converted to typing, and much of the going out for a walk had been turned into watching YouTube videos about the outside world. This device brings me joy and quality of life—the two points which I value the most, so I had it placed directly in front of me on the desk to make sure I could sit down and have some fun. I even bought a large monitor to compliment the small screen size which caused the words to be unusually small.

Object Biography: The Lion from Afghanistan

This stuffed lion is about 6 inches from head to bottom and about 7 inch from foot to foot. It is made primarily out of cotton with the head and upper body being both made and filled with cotton, although the bottom seems to be filled with some type of weighted beads. the stitching and coloration seems very uniform and there is a place on one of the seems where is appears a tag may have been. The lion is tan in color with a white patch on the mouth and brown wool used for the mane and tail. While the mouth and nose are purely thread the eyes are gloss and seem to be some kind of bead and feel as though they have a rod sticking into the head to attach them.

I received this lion from my dad when I was about 6 or 7 years old. He sent it to me while on deployment in Afghanistan in the mid 2000’s. My dad served with the Navy Intel group in the Middle East and moved around a lot before getting stationed in Afghanistan. We weren’t always allowed to talk to him do to the classification of some of his work, but he would call occasionally and send us letters and little things from over there. He sent the whole family all kinds of jewelry boxes and carvings, but the most important thing he ever sent me was this little lion. I’ve always liked lions and thought they were amazing animals, because of that this lion was something I attached to immediately. It also reminded me of my dad during the time he was deployed and after his return in 2008, it remained an item that I was attached to and kept put up in my room. When I moved away to Auburn, I brought this lion with me and set it in my room on a shelf. Although I don’t physically interact with it, when I see it I think of my family. I’ve moved again since being in Auburn and today he sits just under my tv where I always see him before I leave for school or work.

In studying my life, a historian could see a multitude of interpretations for the stuffed lion. The truth is that when I was young I liked lions and this is likely one of the easiest inferences to make. I also own a bible with a lion stamped into the front front cover, further reinforcing that first claim, but also tying it to my religion. Another interpretation might play into my early August birthday and my lion zodiac sign. With no tag or clear origin it may get lumped in with the beanie babies trend of collecting stuffed animals. I feel like the story behind the object is much more than anyone could find from just looking at it, this lion means a lot to me because of the symbolism I’ve placed upon it. I actually bought my bible to remind me of the lion, because I leave it at home and my bible stays with me most of the time. I think my enjoyment of the object is simple and that may make it a bit harder for a historian to identify without knowing the story of my dad. That being said I think if they were to put it into an exhibit, that exhibit would likely be based around the Iraq War or soldiers writing home. I think I will likely make the lion into a family heirloom passing it down through my family along with the story of where it came from.

Object Biography


Pictured is one copy of the 1979 revision of the Book of Common Prayer. The book has a black leather binding with a gold colored cross on the front and gold writing that says “The Book of Common Prayer” on the spine. As well as the publishing logo for Churching Publishing Incorporated, the publishing arm of the Episcopal Church. The page ends are also gold colored. The book is worn in the front of the binding and text block, which along with crinkled pages suggested it was used regularly. The book was place on a shelf along with other versions of the Book of Common Prayer, Hymnals, Bibles, and other Anglican religious books. It appears not to have been carried based on its sized, except maybe in a large bag like a briefcase or suitcase. The book was mass produced in the United States from between 2016 and 2020 given the authorization note in the front dated 2016 and the reception of the book in 2020. As is evident was a personalized gift tag dated “4 Pentecost June 28, 2020” and belonged to one Mr. Kyle Munroe.


This version of the Book of Common Prayer is the 1979 revision to Thomas Cranmer’s original 1549 Book of Common Prayer for the Church of England and builds on major revisions in 1662, 1789, and 1928. The book has widespread circulation in different versions and languages. The 1979 version could be found in almost every Episcopal Church in America, with the 1928 in others, and the 1662 being in every Anglican church around the world. However, this version is a personal one, small enough to find in a bag for travel if desired. Indicating that idea was for the owner to take it with them in travel or even daily life to use. Additionally, the book is not common to the South, as most Southerners at the time were Baptists or Methodists, who did not regularly use the Book of Common Prayer.

Based on the wearing of certain pages Mr. Munroe used the book every morning and evening for a set of prayers and readings known as the daily office. The daily office goes through the Psalter every month and the entire Bible over a two-year cycle. Below is an example of the page with the psalms divided morning and evening with the readings below. Everyday is a reading from the Old Testament/Apocrypha, Epistles, and Gospels. It is believed that this book was used by an individual like Mr. Munroe in attempts at finding greater peace and meaning in their lives. Mr. Munroe was a good decade older than most confirmands, and is believed he was not a member of any church prior to 2020. The Book of Common Prayer has significance not only to Mr. Munroe but to most all Episcopalians, it’s the secondary key text of the denomination after only the Bible. Contained within is the directions for how to perform all necessary sacraments for the running of a church, and contains the liturgies for services.


Object Biography

The object that I have chosen to describe and tell you it’s meaning to me is my wedding ring.  I have been married for 29 years, just last week, September 20.  I actually have two pictures of my ring.  The first one is my original wedding set.  After twenty five years, the band on me wedding ring broke so my husband said that he wouldn’t mind if I made a new design for my wedding set.  

The second picture is my wedding band that I had designed and made.  It’s a one of a kind ring.  It is made of 14 kt. Gold and diamonds.  The center stone is 1 carat, with the surrounding stones consisting of  two ½ carat diamonds, four 1/4 carat diamonds, and six 1/8 carat diamonds.  I had this ring made in 2016 so it is four years old. 

This ring was made by Ware Jewelers for me. It’s made by melting the gold and putting in into a mold for the ring shape.  The diamonds are added after the gold has cooled.  They are placed specifically, and gold is added around the top edges to keep the diamonds from becoming loose.

Wedding rings are made all over the world and are a symbol of being married.  They show other people that you are in a committed relationship.  Wedding bands are circular, meaning that the love is never-ending, although that isn’t always the case.

Wedding bands have a cultural, religious, and social significance.  People in most parts of the world wear them. In American society, people wear their rings on their left hand, but in Japan and other parts of the world, the wedding band is worn on the right hand.

The only time that I have not worn my wedding ring was when I had surgery and when I had it remade.  I felt naked and uncomfortable not wearing it.  I was always anxious to have it back on my finger.

Wedding rings come in a multitude of metals and stones.  Each person can pick what they would like to have their ring made of and what color and shape the stone will be.  The carat size is also a major factor, as the larger the carat, the higher the price.  Diamonds and sapphires are the most expensive stones.

I wear my wedding band with pride.  I have a great husband who is loving and kind.  He has never criticized anyone and is compassionate and giving.  I have hit the Jackpot!  After twenty nine years together, he is still my best friend.  We do a lot of things together but also are comfortable doing things with our friends on our own.  I trust him completely and I know he feels the same way. 

I believe a historian in a hundred years would think that people held marriage in high regard and cherished the wedding ring as a symbol of love and fidelity.

This is a story that David wrote for a newspaper that he was the publisher for….I hope you like it!  This is a true story.

Want to wish my wife Barbara Jane Fowler-Dismukes Happy Anniversary today! A few years ago I wrote this and thought I would share…

Ball & Chain

I shoulda’ known, if anybody should have known, it should have been me. I mean all of the signs were there. No, not just the sign on the building, but ‘THE’ signs, the bars (not the drinking at kind)… steel bars, prisoners in jump suits stamped ‘Property of Liberty County Jail’, guards and a even a judge. Anyone would have thought, I was about to be jailed, thrown in the slammer, sent up the river… ball and chained. But, the one thing I didn’t see in that rustic, small brick building in Hinesville, Georgia in 1991, was the ball and chains.

Thing was, I wasn’t there to be locked up, roughed up, beat up or chained up… I was there to get hitched up. Yep, I was there to jump the broom. I t does always bring out the curiosity in everyone when the question comes up, “Where did you guys get married?” When either my wife or I respond, “We got married in jail,” there’s no getting away or out of the conversation without an explanation. 

The explanation, is not as intriguing as one may think. Returning from Desert Storm, I had found the true love of my life and the Army had given me orders to Germany. We knew we wanted to get married, but Uncle Sam decided to get things going faster and moved the time up. So, that September morning we decided it was time to go see the judge. The judge, wasn’t at the courthouse, she was at the jailhouse. Neither of us being the patient type and waiting for her to return, we kindly told the clerk, we’d meet her there… at the jailhouse.

On the way, we passed the First Baptist, First Methodist and the First Presbyterian Church of the greater city of Hinesville. But, we were about to overcome and triumph our imagination over intelligence. Since I’d grown up Baptist and she Methodist, we figured neutral ground would best be in the county jail.

Today, looking back over the years, those locks and bars signifies something more than their cold, black steel. They represent the solid relationship that forged our marriage. The security we have with one another. Not the security like Otis Campbell in Mayberry when after his regular nightly drinking binges, he would lock himself in the town jail until he sobered up. (Whether he did this because his wife would not let him come home drunk, or because the penalty for public intoxication. Who will ever know but Otis.)

One thing for sure, a long secure and loving relationship is the ball and chains I discovered years ago and is what keeps me in the chains I never want to be released from.

Original Wedding Set

Custom Wedding Ring

Material Culture – Object Biography

Jewelry Box, American, ca. 2010-2020

Jewelry Box

American, ca. 2010-2020

Beads and Felt

Twenty-first century beaded jewelry box featuring silver, white, and blue beadwork. Dimensions are approximately 2 ½ in. x 1 ½ in.

This square jewelry box features small, silver beadwork along the base and sides and a more ornate beaded detail on the lid with navy blue and white beads arranged into a simple geometric pattern. The beads vary from small spherical shapes to longer cylindrical shapes. Along the edges, square metal colored beads create a border. The top is removable and inside the box features smooth black felt. It was produced approximately 2017 and was mass produced, likely in China, for commercial distribution.

This jewelry box is found in my bedroom and functions as a place to store and protect jewelry such as rings and necklaces when not in use. Its more ornate design also features as a decoration within my bedroom and a reminder of when and by who it was given to me.

 It fits into the cultural pattern of women wearing jewelry and the many variations that can be found in the size of individual collections. For me specifically, it shows that while I do wear jewelry, I only own a small amount and an even smaller amount I consider valuable enough to protect within the small box. While the box itself is of little monetary value, the contents are more telling of me as a person. It generally holds my engagement ring, a necklace given to me, and my grandmother’s wedding rings. Someone looking into the jewelry box would be able to see things that I value such as the sentimental value of a present and even more importantly my grandmother’s rings show my attachment to a lost family member. This in itself shows a jewelry box as a larger cultural indicator because often the contents are more valuable than the box itself.

A COVID-19 Story

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, China became the epicenter which caught global attention. I was lucky enough to have a couple of my family members go to Wuhan and support the medical team there since they were surgeons. Although the situation in my hometown Xi’an was manageable, the people in Wuhan suffered great losses.

      When the TV footage of Wuhan central hospital was broadcasted everyone was shocked, people there seemed to be furious, they were shouting, screaming for help, and occasionally lying on the floor due to the pain. Doctors and nurses ran around trying their best to sooth the patients even though they were dressed up in nearly 30kg of protective gear. At first no one saw the epidemic coming, some of the officials from higher up even tried to cover this pandemic as a seasonal flu. The medical team would ask for help, but the response they got was the outside help would be here within “a couple” days. But the entire city of Wuhan was in lock-down and no one can either enter or leave.

      It was until other provinces also started to show symptoms of the disease that the central government paid attention to the pandemic. As a response to support Wuhan, my mother along with my aunt was sent there as the helpers of the Clinical Laboratory team. Their basic work each day was to test as many people as they could and identify the ones who need treatment. “It was a heart-breaking scene” my aunt said, “thousands and thousands of people were brought to Wuhan central hospital where we were stationed to test for COVID-19, some of them died even before testing began.” Soon after the first wave, medical equipment fell short and the PPEs (Personal Protective Equipment) were not enough, each doctor could only receive one mask and one pair of gloves per day. It was suicide even to work with the patients. My aunt further stated: “I saw doctors hanging on to their last breath to complete the surgery and collapsed in the operating room once the operation had finished.” Yet the Chinese media still claimed it was nothing to worry about. A dozen doctors lost their lives fighting on the front-lines and hundreds more of people’s lives were lost.

      When the west caught air about what is happening on in China they scorned and said such losses happened because China is a developing country with limited medical technology. However, when the western hemisphere was hit with the virus, their media exclaimed “How can this be possible ! How can China have such low death rates ? ” It’s not that our death rates are low, it’s just that we went through such a stage united. “President Trump stated that this pandemic is the democrat’s evil scheme to interfere his election, I definitely doubt that. And I don’t believe he would be able to make the virus disappear if he got reelected.” my mother claimed. That was the most interesting part of the interview. People who work on the front lines should be respected as they are the saviors of humanity.


I decided to talk about my experience with covid-19, and how it affected my life due to my previous positive test this past summer. Before covid my daily life was simple, I went to school and work mainly, also the grocery store here and there. I sometimes went out to a bar, not too much though. When covid hit us during the spring semester, I was back home for spring break, and that is when I found out that campus was completely shut down. Other than virtual classes, the shutdown was not a big adjustment for me since I lived off campus. I had to adjust to wearing a mask everywhere I went, which can be irritating sometimes. Fortunately, I was still able to work because Home Depot was an essential business (Yeah, I thought it was odd too). Working at Home Depot became a little stressful, because it became very busy and we had to deal with customers that opposed the new guidelines of the store. Things such as limiting the number of customers in the store and trying to get them to wear mask among other things. Even though the job was stressful at times, I never complained because I was blessed and extremely grateful to have during these times.

            It was strange seeing the whole world shutting down, never thought I would witness something so epic. Seeing people wearing mask everywhere you go and staying six feet apart from each other has become the new norm. Right before covid-19 became a pandemic I became involved with the history club here at Auburn, I do not know when meetings will resume if ever. In July I tested positive for Covid-19, the first week was rough. My symptoms were fever, chills, and bad coughing spells, during the fourteen days of quarantine I stayed in my room and stay hydrated. The timing was bad since I was in the middle of moving to a new place, good thing I have some friends that got my stuff for me and helped me through the process. When it was time for me to take my next test, I had no more problems or any symptoms. But I still tested positive, three more to be exact, the frustration I felt was nerve wrecking. I was fortunate that Home Depot was still paying me, because if it were not for that, I would have been in a real bind. My family takes covid very serious and was worried after all those positive tests because they had their own experience with Covid-19. My dad and his wife previously had Covid and had to quarantine for twenty-one days. Also, my aunt died from it earlier in July, she did have pre-existing health conditions that contributed to her dying from Covid. Everyone is doing fine now including me four positive tests, I finally tested negative on the fifth one. I was told that doctors found out that some people may still have particles in their sinus area, which will keep you testing positive. So, after my last positive test, I started flushing my sinus area and my next test came back negative. It feels good now that I can leave home, I still do not go anywhere but to the store. Now that I am Covid free, I donate plasma. Since I have antibodies that fights the virus, my plasma is in high demand. We have a family reunion planned for this upcoming summer, but we are not certain what is going to happen due this pandemic. But our hopes are high.

COVID-19 “The New Normal”

For this blog post I decided to interview a friend of mine, a twenty-year old female who attends school here at Auburn University, to find out how her life has changed since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

How are your friends, family, partner, or other important people in your life doing? My friends and family have definitely, as well as myself, had to adjust to a new and very different normal. My parents have been at home for the duration of this Covid stage, as well as my High school senior sister. I feel bad for her in particular. Her senior high school days are not nearly the same as time were, but she is making the most of it. As well am I and all my friends, family and fellow students.

What has been your biggest difficulty adjust too in the past few months? Personally, I miss having a normal schedule with daily interactions with my friends on campus, in class or just hanging out. Without a normal schedule, the school days are harder for me as well. Planning is very important.

Do/did you have a job on or off campus? No. I did last summer but due to the pandemic and the fact I tore my ACL it made it difficult for me to find a job. So I decided to rehab my knee and take classes online.

Are you involved in student organizations, sports, or clubs? Yes I am in a sorority on campus.

How has the pandemic affected them? We have had to conduct all meetings virtually and no socials or other activities have been able to happen as they normally would during a regular semester.

Are you doing any community work or volunteering as a result of the pandemic – shopping for neighbors, donating blood, other community work? Not directly with the pandemic but I did help with relief and clean up from the affects of hurricane Sally.

What seemed normal a few weeks ago that seems strange to you now? I haven’t noticed anything change in the past couple of weeks but compared to March it is a completely different world. I do hope that things begin to get better and the world can go back to how they used to be this time last year.

What do you miss most about how the world used to be before this world-wide pandemic? Being able to go out to restaurants with friends and family. I also miss spending time with my grandparents. Due to COVID-19 and some previous health problems that my grandad has had my family and I have not been able to spend as much time with him and my grandmother as we normally do. I also miss being able to go to concerts and sporting events. I just hope we can recover from all of this.