Friday, September 24, 2004

When inspiration hits...

I have to leave in 10 minutes to train developmentally disabled adults how to operate fire extinguishers (which is another posting entirely). I just read another wonderful post by flea at One Good Thing ( and am now inspired to write a quick couch-disposal story.

When my wife and I got married, 90% of the furniture we owned was hand-me-down or otherwise second (or third) hand. We did buy a new bedroom suite from Sears (not wanting to start our married life in debt, we bought a cheap set) . About a year into our marriage, we decided to take the plunge inot living room furnishings by purchasing a sofa and love seat set.

The set was blue and puffy. It was hard to move in and out of the apartment, townhouse, and two homes we've lived in since 1989. The sofa had reclining capabilities on each end, which made it great place to sit, but very heavy to move. It wore very well through 2 kids and 2 dogs, various illnesses, and all of the moves. It still was a great place to sit or lay down, but it's bulky design really overwhelmed our living room.

This year, after 14 years of service, we decided to buy a new sofa and loveseat. My small thrifty side hates to part with possessions that are still functional and in good condition, but the set was too heavy to try to take it downstairs, and we just needed a change. To dispose of "old blue", we hauled the set to my in-laws garage sale (Thanks, good neighbor Tom) and priced it to sell. I had no intention of taking it back home. In fact, I joked about hauling it into the alley and setting it ablaze if no one purchased it.

A young woman came to the garage sale and marvelled at the set. She called her husband and told him about our rock bottom price. She was so happy to get the OK to plunk down $85 for both pieces.

As she left, she said "I am so happy! My old set is falling apart, it's really junky. We've had it for FOURTEEN YEARS".

It's amazing how 14 years can be lived. Whether it be pride of ownership, or just plain overprotectiveness, we managed to keep our first sofa set in good condition throughout the years. I'll be thrilled to get 14 years out of the new set.

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