Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Free time, Day Four: It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

What a schizophrenic day this was.

It started off as the best of times, when my lovely Lois friend stopped by around 9:30 am.

Lois is going through some transitions in her life, and she's moving into a new place. She'd read my previous blogs, and she knew that I've been accumulating what she needed.

All you have to do is ask, I say.

Lois put a dibs on one of the couches we'd found over the weekend.

Always respect the dibs, I say.

She had her pick. We'd found two. And she picked the standard sofa, as opposed to the sofa sleeper.

Thank God. Sofas + beds =  heavy.

And get this!! The coolio comfy wing back chair I procured from Suzie yesterday goes perfectly with the couch Lois chose! And Lois needed a chair, too! It seemed only logical that we load both pieces in the truck and deliver them to Lois. We're nothing if we're not logical.

Because we were going to Aurora to pick up a mattress and box spring I'd dibs yesterday.

So we loaded the sofa and chair into the truck. So far, it's all good.

I'm so happy that these pieces went to Lois. And you can tell from this completely ROCKING photo that Lois was happy with her Free Time.

Thankfully, the brief Colorado cold snap is over, and we weren't barraged by snow or sleet or sheets of ice. Today was melty. Today required no jacket after 10 am. This was good, because the new apartment Lois found is on the second floor.


It was tough, lugging the couch up a flight of stairs to her new groovy pad. No one tripped on the melty slush, no one was crushed in the maelstrom of upwardly mobile furniture, and only a light salting of F and S words were tossed in the process, mostly by me.

And now, the chair is next to the fireplace.

Just as an FYI, the initial intention of the wing back chair was to protect the its occupant from the heat of a fire.

Back to the story.

Thank God Lois chose the couch without the bed tucked inside. She, Mr. Fabulous and I were very, very grateful. Because moving the sleeper sofa upstairs would have been really hard.

The process of moving one's belongings from one place to another is such a pain in the ass. So I feel for Lois, because our two pieces were the first items to hit her new digs. She's only just begun.

I'm glad we could help, and I'm also glad that moving is nowhere on my landscape.

Transporting these pieces to the House of Lois was the best of times when it came to today.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

While we were at Lois' new pad, I did a bit of refreshing on the craigslist. And poof! There was a couch, love seat and coffee table that were being offered for free, just a short drive down the street.

There was no photo of these offerings, but the copy indicated that the couch and love seat had been stored in plastic, implying pristine.

I called, and the owner of these undoubtedly quality items required that we take it all or nothing, sight unseen.

I wasn't willing to commit to that.

Frankly, the time I have when I'm not working and I'm with Mr. Fabulous is too valuable to be spent being bullied into taking at least two truckloads full of stuff I haven't even laid eyes on, so I passed.

I'd had my first exposure to the craigslist vibe of entitlement I'd heard about. Like your stuff is exactly what my world needs to become fulfilling.

No, thank you.

In any case, we were close to the mattress and box spring.

We twisted through the winding streets of a homogenous subdivision, and spotted the set we were looking for, on the covered porch, as promised.

They were sub-par, to say the least. The mattress, especially, looked like a pretend mattress. A prop. As Mr. Fab said, despite being advertised as new, every bed in my house that's been slept on for years and years was of higher quality than the mattress/box spring combo we'd intended to take.

So we left it.

This experience was our first brush with true junk.

Until now, I'd gladly put anything we've found into my home. We've found some amazing items these past few days.

Today brought a seed of doubt.

I started this project on a weekend. I'm thinking weekends are when the really good free stuff is up for grabs.

And I think there are a lot of refreshers out there. Typically, by the time these listings become available when I refresh my iphone, they've been on the market for 7 to 9 minutes. And when we're on the road and I'm refreshing, the items I've called about have already been dibs.

This amalgam of post-Lois circumstances planted a kernel of doubt that grew into a burning bush over the course of the afternoon. Is this project possible? If I do continue to collect these items, I thought, I really really need to partner with an organization who can help me distribute what I find to people who would otherwise go without.

So as the sun was setting today, I was re-thinking the game plan.

Before I go a whole lot further, I need to establish that end-user partnership.

I decided that I'm not stopping, by any means. I'm just catching my breath.

I completely enjoyed the early part of the day, when I had the opportunity to see how happy Lois was with what we'd found for free, despite the sweat equity. I'm so glad she's benefitting from my folly.

But if this day were a person s/he would be easily diagnosed as bipolar.

I got my groove back, eventually.

Tomorrow portends a day of planting seeds for Thursday, because my real job is taking me out of the loop.

What in the hell have I gotten myself into?

Or onto?

Because today was a roller coaster.

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