False Sense of Security
"Ikea is pure magic, how have I never been here before? You walk through the showroom, you decide what you want your new, grown-up apartment to look like, you stop for a freaking hot dog at the halfway point because Ikea is considerate of your feelings like that, and then you grab what you want, all packaged up in two cardboard boxes that fit conveniently in the back seat of a Toyota Corolla -- nothing could be easier! And best of all? It's dirt cheap! Let me tell you, if Ikea were an attractive, urban-dwelling 20-something, I would pick it up at a bar, make sweet love to it all night long, and then treat it to brunch in the morning. Man, I can't wait to get this dresser home and start assembling! I'll open a beer, put on some music... this is going to be fun!"
Shock & Disbelief
"What. The. Hell. How did they fit so many pieces into such a small box, this is like a clown car of bullshit! And what is all this? There must be 500 different sized nails and screws in this bag! And why is there a stupid coloring book in here, where are the directions? Wait, no... this can't be..." [The first beer disappears in seconds, "An Honest Mistake" by The Bravery plays in the background.]
[Second beer is temporarily set to the side as Britney Spears' "Work Bitch" starts to play.] Okay, I can do this, I just have to be organized and systematic. Instead of building whole pieces, I'll do an assembly line: line up all the nails, hammer all the nails, attach these plastic cover thingies... Suddenly feel like wonderful combination of Henry Ford, Rosie the Riveter, and Bob the Builder. Can we build it? YES WE CAN!"
"MOTHERFUUU$*@#$%*!@%#$*&!! Upside down! They are all upside down! One hundred and seven screws later and the whole thing is -- I can't even talk, I'm so mad! Someone get me a puppy! I need to kick a puppy right now! [The Pretty Reckless, "Make Me Wanna Die" comes on, beer bottle is smashed against the wall and held menacingly against the uncooperative piece of furniture.]
["Last Resort" by Papa Roach now blares through the speakers; beer #4 is opened with purpose.] "Okay, there is no way these 'directions' are right, there's 4 more holes and I only have 1 bolt #27104 left. I think I know what to do though, I'm going to make this work. I just have to move some stuff around is all. I'm going to finish putting this thing together the same way I learned how to have sex: not by following some manual, but by sticking things where it feels right."
[Swinging the most recent empty bottle overhead, "Let's Hear It for the Boy" by Deneice Williams fills not just the room, but each drawer of the now-complete dresser.] "Wow, what night! So many things I want to say, so many people I want to thank! First of all, I want to thank my parents -- thank you for raising me to believe in myself, and for teaching me to be a creative problem solver; I couldn't have done this without you. A big thanks to everyone who 'liked' the picture of my finished dresser on Instagram, my fans are simply the best! And you know what, I want to take the time to thank my haters too, all the people who said I couldn't do this, who said this couldn't be done. Y'all are my motivators, and y'all can suck it! Peace!"
[The music has been turned off, beer bottles recycled, Ikea dresser now full of clothes and an overinflated sense of accomplishment.] "Please God, let me never find out where these extra three screws were supposed go. Amen."
Follow Wes Janisen on Twitter: www.twitter.com/wesjanisen