Wednesday, July 30, 2014


I have a very strong aversion to ugly things.  Ugly clothing, ugly people, ugly furniture - I cannot tolerate it.  I generally keep my opinions to myself, but when it comes to things in my own home, I absolutely will not stand for ugly.  Sometimes it drives me to limits I might not otherwise reach.

Back in 2010 I moved into a really awesome giant two-bedroom apartment in Silverlake with a view of the Hollywood sign, Griffith Observatory and all of downtown Glendale.  The apartment itself was glorious in all ways - except for the fact that the parade of tenants that had lived there through the years and switched roommates in a way to make the place continuously occupied for over seven years not only owned but also LEFT some of the ugliest furniture known to mankind.

Consequently, when my roommate moved to Hawaii, she wasn't interested in packing an oversized couch in her carryon, so I was left with a smorgasbord of offensive furniture and a brother who is ugly-blind.

Specifically, we had three couches.  THREE.  One ugly pink 80s couch had been relegated to a corner and used as a place to pile our excess of blankets and a throne/fort for my cats; one was a gigantic brown sectional in a horrific brown corduroy that could never have been attractive that had the added bonus feature of being able to sleep two NBA players comfortably, and the final couch, the object of the majority of my rage, was an off-white brocade 70s/80s sofa with flattened cushions and unsettling stains.

As soon as my roommate moved out and the place became "mine," I took it upon myself to throw out the small pink couch and all of its mismatched pillows within mere hours of her departure.  Next on the list was the white couch.  It was about 8 feet long and nearly 4 feet wide, and to this day my brother and I have absolutely NO IDEA how this couch was put in the apartment unless it was built completely in the living room or simply existed and the contracting company built an apartment around said sofa.

When my brother wasn't home to help me move it out of the apartment for over a week, one 90-degree evening I decided to take matters into my own hands.  "I can just push it down the stairs.  No lifting, just pushing."  HAHAHA NOPE.

Within the first hour I determined that regardless of the positioning of other furniture, the couch could not be pushed out either of the possible exits and make it through the front door.  I tried turning it on its side, flipping it upside-down, backwards, forwards, upright, laying down, and in every position there was about a 3 inch margin of error that kept the couch from exiting my building.

Ok, I thought, I'll just take it apart.  Once I get an arm off, that'll get those 3 inches taken care of and I can get it out.  So I go get my screwdriver and start ripping off the upholstery only to find that the entire couch has been STAPLED AND GLUED.  By this time I'm sweating profusely, wearing mismatched workout shorts and a holey tshirt, swearing at an inanimate object that has been half ripped apart laying upside-down on my living room floor, surrounded by pieces of foam and floral fabric.  I began to consider other options, such as a controlled fire, but I was relatively sure that wasn't within the terms of my lease.

I WOULD NOT let the couch win.  It would never go back to its original position.  It was going to stay right there until it was outside my house on the sidewalk like the trash that it was.  No ugly thing like that was going to ruin my apartment.  My rage was building.  FUCK YOU COUCH, YOU ARE NOT BETTER THAN ME.

It was about this point that rage caught up to logic and they formed a dangerous (but successful) idea: I needed to saw the couch in half.  I couldn't unscrew it, so I was just going to have to saw it.  After a few concerning posts on Facebook asking friends if they were in possession of a chainsaw or knew of a place I could rent one at 9:30pm on a Tuesday, I took my sweaty, disgruntled self to the Home Depot a few miles north.

In my infinite wisdom, I felt that if I were going to be doing a major construction project, I would need to be wearing safe, closed-toed shoes.  So I walked into a nearly empty Home Depot in Glendale at about 10pm wearing the aforementioned shorts and tshirt that I had sweated through, Ugg boots, soaking wet hair falling out of a ponytail and an expression that would scare a biker gang and went straight for the power tools.

If there is something you're not expecting to see on a weeknight, it's a small, angry blonde girl dressed like a homeless person pacing back and forth between the saws and axes with a frighteningly intense look on her face.  This was, in fact, the first time I had been to a Home Depot where at least three employees passed me and did not offer to help.  One went so far as to decide he didn't need to go down my aisle after he'd already begun his turn.

After about 20 minutes of weighing the pros and cons of an axe versus a saw, I picked out a nice double-toothed saw, paid cash and left.  I'm sure the police arrived minutes later.  But it was too late for the couch.  This is how I left it:

Not for long.  I arrived home with my newest friend, Mr. Saw:
It said a lot of fancy things on the package that I took to mean "WILL SUCCESSFULLY MURDER YOUR COUCH."  And murder it did.  In a matter of ten or so minutes, my couch looked like this:
Look how easily that will fit through doors!  SO EASILY.  I was so excited I posted this photo to Facebook with the caption "HALFWAY DONE!"  Take that, you ugly piece of shit.  Think you can go around being all ugly and sitting in my house?  THINK AGAIN.

In the end, the couch was cut into six pieces that were piled up downstairs by the trash bins.  My brother came home right at the moment I was carrying one of the arms of the sofa down the stairs.  He knew that this was a situation where he should likely stay in his room for the duration of the evening, which he did.  In the end, the scene of the crime wasn't as grizzly as it could've been...

I can still feel the joy and relief I felt looking at that last photo.  I had removed the cancer and the operation had been a success.  Unfortunately, the giant brown couch was there to stay until we moved out a month ago - and my brother took it to his new place, VOLUNTARILY.  I had absolutely no problem with the fact that I was left for two weeks with only an IKEA Poang chair and the amazing mid-century coffee table someone had gloriously left for me, sitting alone in the middle of a gigantic 600sq foot living area - because they MATCHED.

I'm sure someone is wondering if I have ever used that saw again.  In fact, it has come in handy multiple times in cutting open spaghetti squash.  Trust me, once you've sawed open a squash you'll never use a regular kitchen knife again.

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