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Futon Adventures: Part two
August 28, 2008 - Bethany Fehlinger and Marjorie Stromberg
After my battle with the futon, I had my friend and her dad come over to take a look at it. The good news was that the legs were, in fact, bent and the fake metal on the screws was almost completely stripped, which indicate that it wasn't entirely my fault that I couldn't put it together properly. The bad news, however, was the bent legs and the stripped metal were most likely my fault from tilting the futon without properly attaching the legs first.
What my friend's dad figured out was that the legs initially are supposed to be screwed in by hand, but once they reach a certain point, they need to be screwed in the rest of the way with a tool that came in the toolkit. Since I hadn't done that, I had attempted to stand up the futon with poorly attached legs, which had ruined it.
First of all, where in the directions did it say to attach the legs with the tool? Nowhere. The only thing the manual said about attaching the legs was "attach the legs," and it showed a picture of the legs winding in a circular motion into the back of the futon.
I'm not sure if the directions were just written (or not written) really poorly, or they just expected everyone who buys furniture to be an engineer.
The unsatisfactory surgery made me feel like a failure because I didn't figure out that obvious step. I had been so proud of myself for putting together my TV stand and putting nails in my wall to hang pictures and decorations, that I thought this was something I was almost certain I could do on my own.
However, dwelling on my mistakes of the past was not an option. I made a phone call to the store I bought the futon from and asked for a replacement. I explained the problem with the legs and they agreed to replace the futon, and informed me they would be sending it in the mail shortly. In order to get my replacement futon, I had to return the old one, which would involve taking it apart, putting it back in the box, and leaving it out for UPS.
I explained to the store representative that I could not fit the futon back in the box because I could not pick it up by myself to take it apart, and there was no way I was going to be able to get it downstairs, let alone onto my deck for pickup. She said she would inquire about a specialty delivery personnel to set up a time and date I could arrange to be home and available for them to pick up the futon.
Anticipating the arrival of my next victim, I was nervous about how I was going to get it up to my apartment. The first futon delivered was left at the bottom of my building. I live on the third floor and luckily had two of my neighbors help me when it arrived. However, I didn't think I could ask for their help again in lifting yet another futon up three flights of steps.
To my surprise, I arrived home from work one day and found my new futon on my deck in front of my door. They had brought it up the steps for me! However, it had been raining all day and the box was almost completely soaked through. âGreat,ã I thought. (Luckily there were no long-term effects from the drenched box).
I could barely manage to get the box inside my door so I knew there was no way I was going to get it up the steps to my apartment. So I just left it in my door entrance until my brother and friend arrived for the weekend.
What that entailed was me barely squeezing through my front door each time I came or left home. And, of course, grocery shopping was an adventure.
My brother and friend arrived a few days later and not only did they bring the futon upstairs, but they put it together in peace and quiet, and it still is standing to this day! They also took apart the old futon and put it back in the box.
A few days later I got a call from UPS and they told me they would arrive to pick up the old futon between noon and 4 p.m. the next day. Not knowing the exact time I had to be home and knowing I couldn't leave work for more than an hour, I decided I was going to somehow get the futon downstairs and leave it on my deck for pickup.
I thought to myself, "Sure, getting it upstairs is hard, but how hard could it be to get it downstairs?"
Although it was very heavy, I figured out if I leaned the box against the wall while I gripped onto the side, the journey down the steps would be a success. Less than three seconds later, I lost my grip on the 78-pound box, and before I knew it, it was sliding out of my hands and down my stairs. It was like one of those slow-motion scenes you see in a movie. In my head I was saying "Noooo!" but I was also thinking, "Well, there's nothing I can do about it now." I surely wasn't going to chase after it.
Luckily I had left the door open as a precaution. The box charged down the stairs as if it were racing other pieces of furniture, and then hit the bottom of the door frame and flipped, what seemed like, 30 feet in the air. The flip also was in slow motion. It was surreal watching a box that big and that heavy fly into the air. Watching it happen, I was wondering what my neighbors were thinking. What would it look like for them to see a huge box bust out of my front door and then flip through the air onto my deck?
After its flip, it landed upright, and that's how I left it to be picked up.
I almost feel bad for the inanimate object. First I bent all of its legs and I then threw it down the stairs. This is why I'm not a real doctor who performs real surgery.
So, to conclude my futon adventures, I would like to end with a lesson I have learned. Furniture, like life, doesn't always come with a perfect manual. Sometimes you have to ask for help.
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The finished product of the second futon is sitting in the room.