One consequence of working part-time at a bookstore is that you tend to use your discount to buy more books than you would otherwise.
One consequence of living in a studio apartment is that you tend to run out of space for stuff really quickly.
I decided last week to consolidate some furniture. I moved a half-bookcase to the wall near my bed, and a 2×2 Expedit* into its former place. My TV bench (a 2×4 Expedit), I turned on end and placed in the former 2×2 unit’s place, next to a larger 4×4 unit. The illusion, now, is of a 4×6 Expedit unit against the wall … and a solid wall of books, which is, face it, awesome. However, this left me short a TV bench, and I opted to replace it with another 2×4 Expedit.
Why replace a 2×4 Expedit with another 2×4 Expedit, I can hear you ask. Why not just put the new one upright against the wall? Well, because the original 2×4 Expedit, and the 4×4, are both Beech, a veneer which IKEA no longer manufactures. I opted for a Birch veneer for the new bookshelf.
With a friend’s help (‘cuz I don’t have a car), I made my way out to IKEA early Saturday to buy the new shelf and some of those wicker-baskets that a.) fit perfectly and b.) are the ideal way to store DVDs. Well, apparently, IKEA was having a Memorial Weekend sale, and one of those items for sale was a 2×4 Expedit. We made our way into the store — and we were there around 10am, right at opening — and the line stretched from the warehouse to the entrance. We couldn’t back out, and staffers challenged us consistently as we tried to get to the exit, “No, really, I just want to get the fuck out of here.” Needless to say, nothing was purchased.
Yesterday, one of the guys I work with mentioned he had to run out to College Park, and in exchange for lunch, agreed to shuttle me to IKEA and to my apartment. I was home around 6:30 with a 2×4 Expedit, and some storage baskets.
Before last night, I had three Expedit units: a 4×4, a 2×4, and a 2×2. Do you know how long it took me to assemble the 4×4? Twenty minutes. The 2×2 actually took about an hour, because I was trying to fit the internal shelves in wrong. I don’t recall how long it took me to assemble the first 2×4, but I know it was nothing like the frustration that lasted two and a half hours last night, and ended with me taking the damn thing back apart and mumbling about how I should’ve waited until the weekend to begin with.
I know what the problem is: the pegs, those stupid wooden dowels, aren’t inserting properly, and no matter how much I tried, I just couldn’t achieve a proper snug fit. I think I might have to remove them all from the shelves, and see if the plugs they fit into are jammed with … something. Meanwhile, if you’d looked into my apartment last night you’d've seen me, drenched in sweat, contorting my body on top of a mostly assembled bookshelf in a vain effort to force the unit together. I’m pretty sure it looked like I was humping the damn thing at one point.
I know that I will prevail, in the end. That the Expedit will fit together as it should, and I will forget the frustration and anger that was involved in putting the damn thing together. And that, as soon as that memory has faded from my head, I will realize how I can squeeze another Expedit into my apartment.
*If you don’t know what the Expedit is, click here.