Last week, Kyle and I accidentally bought a couch.
When I say “accidentally” I don’t mean that we tripped and fell into a furniture with our wallets open. I say “accidentally” in that we didn’t set out that day intending to buy a couch. But it’s something we’d been talking about doing for a while. See, we want to buy a house. We reeeeeally want to buy a house. But with some pretty hefty student loans still hanging above our heads, we can’t justify taking on a lifetime of debt when we’re not done paying on our first lifetime of debts. It’s a fact that we came to begrudgingly, after a long, difficult talk that involved tears and may or may not have ended with alcohol of some form. But during that conversation, we also resolved (subconsciously, because we never discussed it) to recommit ourselves to our tiny, shitty little apartment. If we’re going to have to live in this dump for the next three or four years, we might as well make it the best, most awesome dump we can.
And a fantastic first step would be a new couch.
Our old couches were purchased at Salvation Army and acquired 5th or 6th-hand from family, respectively. If more than $120 was spent on the both of them I’d be amazed.
And in our first house and the three apartments that followed, they treated us well. They were comfy, great for watching tv or nursing a hangover; we even did a surprising amount of work-work sitting on those couches. But there was one area where these couches failed miserably: the area of cuddles. We used to try to watch movies together on one of them, Kyle sitting at one end and me laying with my head on his lap and my legs curled up to my chest. And this was fine…for about 15 minutes. After that my legs would start to cramp, the squirming would start, and no movie, no matter how romantic, could keep us both on that couch. We’d give up and one of us (usually me) would move to the other couch, and we’d finish our movie cuddle-less. As badly as we wanted it to, couch cuddling never worked.
As time passed our couches did not age well, thanks primarily to those two furry little assholes known as our cats. Our plaid couch became one of their favorite scratching posts, especially the corners. We never really stopped them because, well, it’s a shitty couch so who cares, but after a while it got out of hand.
And then there was the smell.
See, our cats were bitches and liked to mark up our couch. It started out from stress (over whatever it is cats get stressed out about) and just went on and on because they continued to smell the spots no matter how many times we scrubbed. Now they’re back on Prozac, and though the peeing has stopped the smell lingers on. It was a potent combination of cat urine and the cleanser we used to treat it, and no matter how much we scrubbed or how many times we ran the cushion covers through the wash the smell stayed. Subtly, the kind of thing that you stopped noticing almost as soon as you sat down, but it was there.
The time of these old couches was over, and we were ready for something new. Which is how a simple trip to Albany to go to the dentist ended with stops at three furniture stores. We hadn’t meant to go couch shopping that day, but one of the major furniture stores was in Albany, and we were already there, and while we’re looking at couches we might as well go check out that other store… There were a few standouts in the crowd, a couple possibilities, but it was all over when we saw it. We knew this would be our couch.
Comfy but not too squishy. Casual, but with nice clean lines in a color that we liked. A good size that would fit nicely into our long apartment living room. But most importantly, we saw instantly that the cuddle possibilities were endless.
A week later, we rented a U-Haul and took our old couches to the dump.
I’d like to say that there was some sentimental fondness that made me a little sad to see them go, but the truth is that I thoroughly enjoyed watching them get smashed by the bulldozer.
Before we knew it our new couch was loaded into the truck, hauled up the stairs, and sitting in our apartment!
(Okay, I made way too light of that process. Truth be told, getting both those pieces up our narrow stairs with two turns and into our narrow apartment was a bitch. At one point we actually had the thing stuck, wedged between three walls and threatening a light fixture. I’m not totally sure how we’re going to get them back out, but we’ll deal with that when the time comes.)
But seriously guys, love this couch! It works so perfectly in our living room, and it’s impossible not to be comfy on it. There are a ton of different ways to enjoy it, but the absolute best is to make a little nest of throw pillows in the corner. (Oh, yeah, I forgot to mention the fact that they included the throw pillows. How kick-ass is that?) It’s like laying in a cross between a hammock and a hug. And movie cuddles? Success! I get to fully stretch out, Kyle gets to fully stretch out, and we still get to get our snuggles on. Love love love.
While we were fixing our apartment’s major issues (and spending money,) we also bough ourselves a kitchen table. Since we moved in to our current apartment we’ve never been able to find a way to fit a table of any kind, and it’s always driven me crazy. I hated that we had to eat every meal on the couch or, if our meal consisted of too many parts to juggle on our laps, the floor. I was constantly spilling shit on myself and the couch, and it felt so uncivilized.
Enter the pub table.
The perfect solution to our space problem. When we’re not using it, the stools get tucked up under the table and the flap folds down so that it takes up almost no space at all. And for meals it unfolds to make a table the perfect size for us two! Of course, it’s also introduced a new problem…
But I’m sure that this is one problem that will solve itself. (Especially if somebody will quit fucking slipping her scraps when I’m not looking!)
I know this sounds wicked lame, but being able to eat our dinner together at an honest-to-god-for-real-real-not-for-play-play table makes me unbelievably happy.
Our apartment? Is still kinda a dump. But it’s on its way to being the most awesomely kick-ass dump that it can be!