Old Sofas Never Die…Unless Assisted

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Boz and Gracie Mourn Their Sofa’s Demise

Boz and Gracie lounging al fresco among the carnage

I must have been drugged or under the control of space aliens to have allowed one particular oversized sofa a resting place in my home. Secured at our island thrift shop Granny’s Attic, the sofa was as comfortable as it was ugly, an olive drab mastodon that some happy family on the island was cart wheeling over to have unloaded. My supposition is they lived closer to Granny’s Attic than the dump.

On the plus side, it could support one man, two dogs, a smattering of newspapers and magazines, and the occasional brave guest unfazed by dog hair and dust. (I must be good company.) With a little creative draping of a Hudson Bay blanket here, a Pendleton duvet there, the sofa’s makeover was complete. It’s 80’s faux Bauhaus roots hidden; it’s barge-like silhouette not.

Yep, Tom’s “media” room was open for business. The run was short. Unfortunately Boz and Gracie preferred the sofa’s ultra suede undercarriage to my stylish wool cloaking devices, quickly laying claim to it as their favorite all-day sleeping casbah.

Gracie begins to suspect something

Cushions on the porch? Gracie begins to suspect something is up.

Four years (and a myriad of sofa covers) later, I’ve resorted to equipping the room’s light fixtures with 15 watt bulbs so I don’t have to look at the thing. There’s likely enough popcorn in the cushions to satisfy a double feature. The fabric now resembles Jackson Pollock’s early work and in the words of my friend John, B&G really see the sofa as their napkin. So today when I spied a handsome slip-covered sofa at my friend Alexis’ garage sale, I knew the green suede monster would soon be slain and removed from its second floor lair.

May I just say when you reach 50 that your labor pool of heavy lifters is pretty shallow. It didn’t help that the sofa was accessed by a stairway wide enough to suit bean poles and minarets. A friend’s back is too important to abuse, so I halted the ill-fated exercise after a couple of telling grimaces (on both their faces and mine). With the sofa wedged on the upstairs landing, my friend Tamara said, “Too bad you just can’t cut it into pieces and throw it out the window.” (Smart girl.) Once they left, I made a beeline for my reciprocating saw. (I wanted no witnesses for this episode of Tom’s Home Remedies.)

Boz misses his sofa

Boz ponders, “What does this all mean?”

Fresh from a quick run to the hardware store for premium sawsall blades, I attacked that thing like a Thanksgiving turkey. I’d considered hurling each piece out of the upstairs window for dramatic effect and quick gratification, but I find the satisfaction of such gestures is short lived when the end (and inevitable) result is harm to me and damage to my house.

After learning that coiled box springs can’t be cut without reverberation that removes the arm from the socket, I rethought my dissection from halvsies to lengthwise at the seatback seam—a very wise choice in avoiding steel springs and chipped teeth. Boz and Gracie were downstairs unwittingly enjoying their last wallow on the sofa’s cushions.

When it was all said and done, the outdated, clumsy carcass littered my drive, frayed fabric and foam core innards exposed and destined for the dump. B&G held a vigil circling the beast like a fallen friend. Several passes later their march ended in favor of comfort. While still respectfully mournful, my two beasts sprawled in repose atop the cushions like Roman nobility awaiting peeled grapes. Real closure came the next day when the new sofa was christened with a couple Milk Bones and a few poorly aimed popcorn kernels. All is well again with this set of couch potatoes.

What I was blogging about a year ago: Summertime, and the Hammock is Ready

13 COMMENTS

  1. Tom – I left a comment on Smooth Pollinator that i hoped might entertain you. Now i can’t stop singing that song in my brain, thanks man. By the way, don’t you own a chain saw?
    sgt

  2. The word for that top photo is forlorn.

    We were thinking a chain saw for our couch, Lumpy. It’s a camelback hulk from the 1920s. Dry rot has done it in at last.

  3. Gleefully, I say yes Brion it is too late. Those cushions are no doubt on a train bound for Oregon like the rest of Seattle’s garbage. I assure you it’s a stunning resting place near the banks of the Columbia River. And as for B&G, they have whole new challenge in trashing the latest sofa.

  4. Warning choke hazard. Do not read this while brushing teeth! Tom I have not had such a good laugh since you were last in JNU 🙂

  5. I made honorable? mention in your blog!!! Sorry, just catching up on my Tall Clover blog reading after at least 2 months!!! Summer time rules: no TV-I guess no TV until I get connected w/the 21st century…, and a rare visit to my computer. I love your blog and hope it becomes a sage novel or at least a collectable book of practical knowlege not unlike the Country Journal or Foxfire for that matter. I love the clarity of your photos, too. It goes without saying and seemingly I continue to gush…love your stellar observations and poetic use of the english language. You’re a peach (sweeter than any of your 6 peach trees). Your pal , PS. Nothing like a saws-all to make short work of a long couch!!!Tamara

  6. I wrote a post about our old sofa. The crumpled Kleenex alone filled a laundry detergent bucket! The big kind! It was so funny- I used your picture, but if you object, I will swap it out. I like your blog. I would love to live in the country, again.

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