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THE PROCRAFTINATOR AND THE COLLAPSING COUCH
By: Audrey Lintner

If our house were to be listed on the market, it would probably be described as having "eclectic charm". You know what I'm talking about. One of the door frames is smaller than the others, there is absolutely no counter space, and the floors slope like ski runs.

We love it, though.

Due to the odd wall sizes and our catch-as-catch-can style of shopping, it's hard to find furniture to fit the available spaces.

"Wow, this would be perfect if it were three inches wider/ two inches shorter/ a little narrower/ less hideous!"

With a limited income, you take what you can get. This is how we found The Couch. It's a dark red pullout sofa from about nine hundred years ago. We picked it up not long after moving into our house, when the rooms were still largely empty and every available surface wasn't stacked with yarn or books.

The estate sale auctioneer was ready to pack up and go home, so he offered to sell the couch for five bucks. Sold! Didn't even have to bang his gavel. With a little help, we got the big red beast loaded up and hauled home.

Here's where it got interesting.

See, this was the first time we'd bought a large item for the house. Tape measures never entered our minds until the moment Larry wrestled the couch up to the back door and attempted to stuff it through.

It was one inch too big for the door on all sides.

There followed an impressive amount of heaving, grunting, and swearing. The couch leaned complacently against the door frame, secure in the knowledge that it wasn't going anywhere except back to the auctioneer, and possibly the dump. Larry's face was the same deep red as the upholstery. His hair stuck to his head in sweaty clumps. When another mighty heave caused the uncooperative couch to bounce off of the house and smack him in the chest, Larry snapped.

With a shout that may or may not have been "Banzai!" but certainly belonged in an undubbed Godzilla movie, Larry attacked the sofa with the combined forces of willpower and rage. The couch, sensing that the time for stalling was at an end, teleported itself through the door and into the mudroom. Wild-eyed and snorting steam, Larry kicked and cursed the couch all the way into the living room, where it has remained to this day.

The couch has survived visiting relatives, jumping children, and, during one exceptionally frigid winter, a family of furniture-usurping mice. It's been Larry's bed for the past many months as he deals with the sweating, fatigue, and insomnia that accompanies lymphoma. The years of faithful service have taken their toll.

The couch is falling apart.

One arm is loose, the upholstery is splitting, and the padding is worn away. We'll be sorry when we finally have to break down and replace it, though. How will we know that it's time? How do you replace an old friend? How can we let go of so many memories?

How the heck are we going to get it out of the house?