Today we went on our first family outing (since Fredrik’s arrival) in pursuit of a La-Z-Boy recliner. That’s right. We’re going full on hillbilly here (no offense to La-Z-Boy lovers) because we have tried the Pinterest Perfect Pottery Barn Gray Nursery Chair, and 15 minutes in it will have anyone wanting to phone their chiropractor.
We figured this furniture store was a reasonable outing – it’s probably a 60,000 square foot store, and every time we’ve visited (we purchased a new mattress last spring) there has been next to no other customers in there, so we figured that, as far as germs go, there is a 100 percent chance that this place is cleaner than our own home.
In Fredrik’s nearly seven weeks of life thus far, thankful as I am, I’ve learned that life with a busy 18 month old and a newborn involves… Constant screaming. Someone is always crying (and someone can include me or Howie as well, because he’s sensitive). So the drive to the furniture store was no different, and we were in a car full of noise, and all the way to the store I questioned whether we should go, but then I repeated to myself over and over, “They need to learn to be flexible, to be in their car seats. This is so good for them. We are so brilliant.”
Upon entering the near empty store we were greeted by our unfortunate sales associate, Mark, Furniture Mark. I say unfortunate, because, given the events that transpired, I think it’s reasonable to conclude that Furniture Mark actually hates us now.
We explained to Furniture Mark that although we aren’t fond of recliners we were in hot pursuit of the cheapest La-Z-Boy in the store. He seemed thrilled at the prospect of an easy sale and quickly led us to the clearance section, where there were several to choose from.
However, apparently there were too many, because we spent the next two hours sitting (and re-sitting) in each of them and contemplating the advantages/disadvantages of each one aloud, negotiating their hypothetical prices, finding flaws with them, asking how much farther said flaws would lower said hypothetical prices, as we dealt with intermittent distractions involving Joel screaming, Fredrik screaming, Joel sprinting through at least 30,000 square feet of the store, Joel reaching for glass vases and other breakable things within his reach, us yelling, “No Joel – DANGEROUS!”
At one point Furniture Mark sniffled, and I may or may not have given him the stink eye and taken Fredrik’s car seat and lunged overly aggressively in the opposite direction. (Later My Mark reassured me, “He sucked up his snot. He didn’t blow it out.”)
And at another point Fredrik had to eat, so My Mark told me to go feed him on a couch across from a TV playing the Olympics. I’m not sure what Furniture Mark thought about this (breastfeeding in public on his couch and all that jazz), but I wasn’t exactly going to ask either given that it was so fracking cold outside, so I just covered up with a scarf and hoped for the best as Joel’s babbling echoed loudly (VERY loudly) throughout the store as My Mark ran back and forth between clearance and non-clearance La-Z-Boys.
During Fredrik’s feeding, I overheard My Mark ask Furniture Mark for a water for Joel (we didn’t come fully prepared), and Furniture Mark so kindly obliged, getting us one (that I think Joel later threw, or spit, onto the floor).
My Mark also had Furniture Mark call another store to ask about their clearances La-Z-Boys to ensure we weren’t missing out on a better one in our city. And then after all of this, we left without buying one, telling Furniture Mark we needed more time and more space to make a final decision.
Though later this evening My Mark called Furniture Mark to tell him which La-Z-Boy we’d decided on, and informed Furniture Mark that we’d be in tomorrow to pick it up. Furniture Mark informed My Mark that upon picking it up, I’d have to sign a piece of paper, given that we want to take advantage of the six month no interest financing, and our store card is in my name.
“Oh – so I guess you’ll see ALL of us again in your store tomorrow!” My Mark joked.
“Ummmmm… Actually, when you arrive, call me, and I will bring the form out to the parking lot for your wife to sign…” Furniture Mark quickly suggested.
In other words, Furniture Mark would like for us to never return.
I mean, I think Furniture Mark should have been a bit nicer given that we were probably his only customer who bought anything today, but I also get it… This age split is… HARD. So hard that it is difficult not to be “those people” when we’re out in public these days. Though I’m holding onto the hope (lots of hope) that, in just a few short months, it will get just a bit easier and rewarding and that Joel and Fredrik will become BFFs who can better entertain themselves and each other (could be wishful thinking, I know).
Also, My Mark is having potential buyer’s remorse about our chair that we technically haven’t even bought yet. He’s worried that a leather chair is too cold, and I’m like, “Well, not if you’re wearing clothes or you throw a blanket on it,” and My Mark’s like, “Well, what if you’re naked?” And, I’m like, “I can’t recall anyone just lounging around naked on our leather couch soooooo…” But yeah… I digress…