It is a sad day at Chateau Shark. Alas the Futon is going on its way. Years, and years, of valuable service have brought it to its dismissal. Despite our love for it (at least mine, Siobhan has always been lukewarm to the futon) our home has no room and our back and asses are too damn old to sit on it any more.
The futon was born, it is believed, at Pier One, although some say it was handcrafted by Furturnius the God of Furniture, and brought home by Ben Sheppard, who nursed it through its early days. Historians can’t say for sure how long the futon resided with Ben in Capitol Hill, the records just don’t go back that far. The belief is that a lack of space in new surroundings forced the futon to be the futon passed from Ben to his brother in law, Jeff. The futon had a merry life with Jeff and spent most of its time taking up 90% of the tiny living room that Jeff and Lavi shared. Although he was sad to let it go, Jeff decided to also pass it on when he found that his penchant for rearranging the furniture every other week was hampered by the sheer mass and awkwardness of the futon. Having just moved into the apartment near campus, Deron, Shawn and I desperately needed a place to park it while playing marathon sessions of NBA Live and eating Winchell’s donuts. We took in the futon and thus began its journey from seating/sleeping implement to furniture legend. After a year of abuse in the apartment the futon moved to Laurelhurst where it was designated to be the crash pad for everyone that passed through. Shawn “furniture tester” Reynolds, not content with smashing in a loveseat at the old apartment, took a disproportionate number of turns on the futon. Over the course of the years at Laurelhurst everyone one of our friends either chilled out, slept, passed out, puked, and/or copulated on the futon (I’m talking about you and that one girl from that one party Deron). The futon was the center of the party room, the futon was where we talked about what was going on with us, where we studied, it was a constant. As the years (all two of them) passed it was time for the guys to head our separate ways. I took the futon with me to California, reuniting it with Jeremy in our Sunnyvale apartment. From there it went with me to my very first solo place (Jeremy nearly broke his back as we lowered the futon down from one floor to the other on the outside of the outdoor stairwell.) Over the years it may have lost some softness, maybe it didn’t fold down as easily as it used to, but it was still good enough for me. The futon and I left California together to seek our fortune and glory on the East Coast. After a brief spat in Connecticut we had to move to Northampton (even inanimate objects know that Connecticut just ain’t cool enough). Together we stayed, comforted by our friends oversized Mountain Dew won TV and pine bookcase donated from Shawn and Heather. When we brought it to Chateau Shark, Siobhan lovingly cleaned it, removing its cover …. Um.. maybe for the first time ever. The archeological dust bunnies were a tremendous find and donated to the Smithsonian for carbon dating and beer stain analysis. The futon has lived out its last days here in the comfort of Chateau Shark. Now, it has definitely lost its softness, it doesn’t fold like it used to and its glory days are behind it.
As I think of the many times I’ve shared with that futon I get a fond appreciation for everything it has been through. Four states, 7-8 moves (just for me alone), ~13 years (again, just me). It has been a constant in my life for a long time and I’m going to miss it. I do think of old memories, old friends and old places when I look at it. Originally I had hoped to give it a proper send off and take it apart and use the wood somehow in all my future woodworking projects as a tribute to the mighty futon. Alas, a good thing can not be destroyed and perhaps, there’s someone out there willing to take it and give it a new life, perhaps one last time it can be for someone else what it has always been for me, a place to park my ass and pass out on.
If you or anyone you know needs a futon then please go here
In honor of the futon next time you can raise a pint, weep openly or pour your 40 on the ground. Give it up for the Futon!! Godspeed my friend may you always fold flat and your mattress not crease.