Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Mark's Treasure Island

Mark has been bugging me for a year to go out to Ikea with him. It apparently is some kind of shopping nirvana that satisfies shopaholics the way free porn on the internet excites sex addicts. Ikea is a store that sells inexpensive, knocked down furniture, that you take home and put together yourself. In other words it is the worst of both worlds for me, shopping and do it yourself projects.

After a white knuckle ride on the interstate, a gleeful Mark pulled up to the huge blue and yellow Ikea building, as excited as a kid seeing Disney World for the first time. Our first stop was the Ikea food court, which is really no more than a high school cafeteria without the high school. On Marks suggestion I had the Swedish meatballs and mashed potatoes. Disgusting! How could a guy who cooks such great dinners for me, think this glop was good? After I choked down my lunch we set off into the vast clutter of the Ikea showroom. The first area was full of some cute looking sofas. When I got up close and sat on a few of them, I realized that they were not only very cheaply constructed, but that they were built for very small people. I think maybe the Swedes were given some bad information about Americans, and thought we were a nation of midgets. We are not, we are a nation of fat asses and we need much larger places to park that lard than the dainty little sofas at Ikea.

As we continued on I understood why Mark was impressed with the place. It wasn't so much the merchandise as the way it was displayed. Little apartments mocked up from all the cheap crap that they sell, put together in a very attractive way. Cheap, cheesy, cabinets, and other products, combined into cute looking kitchens, with bric-a-brac displayed all around. As interesting as that might be for Mark, I reached my window shopping limit within fifteen minutes, and started looking for the exit. This is where the Ikea marketing department showed their genius. Each sign pointing the way to the exits, was actually pointing me on to the next showroom, where I would be exposed to more of Ikea's stuff. I wouldn't be shown the actual real exit until I had been led through the whole building, exposed to the most product possible. I was a rat in a trap. When we finally found our way to the exit, Mark pulled out a brochure he had secretly been carrying. It was the official Ikea map showing the tortuous route we had taken. I know why he was hiding it, the bastard knew I'd have bolted if I had known I'd be on a shopping safari.

7 comments:

  1. Just goes to show how far out of tune you are.

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  2. you can get a "jerker" desk...I saw that in the catalog. When my girlfriend makes me go there I just curl up in one of the installments until she's got what she wants.

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  3. I looked it up and the jerker desk seems to be discontinued. I believe all their jerker products were discontinued on January 20th.

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  4. Only a shopaholic can enjoy that place...unless you're looking for some cheap little item you can't find at Walmart. I'm surprised that you held out so long for the first trip...and I agree about their exit strategy. (maybe THAT'S where W. got his!)

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  5. I would have sat my fat ass on a couch in one of those fake living rooms and fell asleep.

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  6. Ikea is the way of the future in shopping!

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