Monthly Archives: February 2014

Shopping at IKEA. Or “The IKEA Game: Find the Hidden Utfart”

“Not all those who wander are lost.” – J.R.R. Tolkein

For the first time in my life, I got to experience the wonder and joy of shopping at IKEA. Here are a couple of impressions:

The IKEA Center for Kids Who Can’t Read Good and Wanna Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too

Is everybody in Sweden three feet tall? The first couch I sat on made me feel like a giant! Granted, I’m not a small guy – I’m 6’2″ – but, still. My knees were up at about chest level, while the coffee table stood right below mid-shin. It was comical. Then, when I stood up, my head went straight into the hanging light fixture above the coffee table. The entertainment center was about 18″ tall and put the different A/V pieces about 10″ off the floor which is perfect for your remote control if you’re lying on the 7″ tall coffee table. I was waiting for Derek Zoolander to walk in:

Derek: “What is this? Furniture for ants?”
IKEA: “I’m sorry?”
Derek: “How can we be expected to teach children to learn how to read… if they can’t even fit into these tiny chairs?”
IKEA: “Um…”
Derek: “This furniture needs to be at least… three times bigger than this!”

Free With Every Visit: Rosetta Stone Swedish!
I may not be the brightest bulb to come out of the tulip garden, but I’m not THAT stupid. However, I have absolutely no idea how to read the product signs in the store. Here’s an example (my apologies for the picture quality):


Is Grundtal the brand? The design? Is it Swedish for “Rail”? Is it Swedish for “HA HA! Made you squint and cock your head to the side like a confused dog!”?

And of course, no Grundtal is complete without a few Fintorps:


I may not have a clue what those words mean, but I think – I’m not sure – but I think the Fintorps slide onto the Grundtal prior to installation so one can Hänga one’s Mätning Koppar and Redskap.

In the Hedge Maze…
Remember that scene from The Shining (the Kubrick version) where Jack is chasing Danny through the frozen hedge maze? It’s not that walking through IKEA reminds me of Jack run-limping through the maze with an axe… it’s that watching Jack run-limp through the maze with an axe reminds me of how I felt trying to find the damned exit (Utfart. No.. really. Utfart.). You know what really sucked? We walked in and decided we wanted a fountain drink. There’s a nice – really nice – cafeteria at the entrance. And they had no paper cups (Pappersmuggar). Just cups for use in the cafeteria (Cafeteria). Guess where the paper cups are? That’s right!! At the exit! So, we had to walk the entire length of the store 12 times on each of two different levels to find the exit. Fortunately, the cobweb-draped skeletons we saw along the way helped show where dead ends might be (ba-dum-dum!). Once we had our drinks, we were ready to look at furniture.. which, of course, meant going outside and back into the entrance. By the end of it, I was run-limping through the store looking for an axe.

So, there you have it. Shopping at IKEA is fun. It’s good exercise. Now, if I could just figure out if that Lixtorp Kitchen I liked is the style, the color or package.

The Super Yawn Bowl – 2014

“Once you learn to quit, it becomes a habit.” – Vince Lombardi

Well, that was just a heck of a game, wasn’t it?

I’ve become fairly disenfranchised with the NFL – and pro sports in general. For the most part, we get to watch narcissistic divas who speak so poorly one wonders how they got through college. For my money, I’d rather watch kids get financially raped by the NCAA.

For me, these were the most interesting points in the game:

Bud Light’s New Bottle Featuring a Puppy with a Screw-On Cap!
I love Budweiser ad campaigns. It’s like Anheuser-Busch has given up on trying to convince anyone that their beer is any good (it isn’t). Instead, they focus on how amazing they package their really bad beer (Bud Light), or how incredible their Clydesdales are (Bud). In all fairness, I thought the “Soldier Coming Home” commercial was pretty awesome. The point, however, is it has nothing to do with the product itself – really bad beer. Back to the screw-on cap – can you really imagine some guy somewhere saying, “Wow. I am soooo full. I’ll just put the cap back on this bad boy and finish it later.” On the plus side, now traffic cops won’t really know if that container is open or not.

Period Power!
I honestly don’t remember what this commercial advertised, and I don’t really care enough to look it up. What I do remember is a fairly effeminate young man who was doing all kinds of gymnastic and dance moves which resulted in a purple ball smashing into walls and buses and stuff. I don’t even know where to begin with this one. First off, “Power of the Period” sounds like and ad for a feminine hygiene product. According to most of those ads, if one wants a really fun-filled day one simply buys the correct type of tampon; horseback riding, surfing and racquetball are sure to follow! Seriously, though… “Power of the Period”? Also, if the concept of “power” is meant to be portrayed, the last thing that will do it is some androgynous pseudo-guy sashaying around with a purple ball. They should have had him eat the ball and turn into Chuck Norris.

That Truck is on Fire!
So, Malcom Smith gets a brand new Chevy Silverado High Country for being Super Bowl MVP. After all of their effort in showing how manly Chevy trucks are during the in-game ads, Chevy gives Smith an obvious suburban daily driver. I’m sorry, but when your truck has more chrome than a rapper’s teeth, you really don’t need a truck. Fortunately, this truck is incredibly reliable as long as you never let it idle.

Jack in the Box has a new burger with bacon built right in to the patty! And it has bacon mayo! And strips of bacon! As far as I can tell, the basic message of this ad was, “If you put enough bacon on anything – even our burgers – it tastes pretty good!”. Wouldn’t it just be easier to make a really good BLT?

Tim Russell Tebow Wilson!
I like Tim Tebow. I also like Russell Wilson. Why? Because they’re not afraid to talk about their faith in Christ. I’m waiting to see what all the Tebow-haters have to say about Wilson. Perhaps if Tebow had won a Super Bowl his outspoken faith would be okay?

New Girl Features an Old Girl!
My girlfriend and her daughter both love this show called “New Girl”. I’ve seen it a couple of times and it’s okay. The episode right after the Super Bowl featured Prince/The Artist Formerly Known as Prince/The Artist Formerly Known as a Symbol for Androgyny But is Now Called Prince Again. I’m sorry, but when was the last time this guy was relevant? Fortunately, the normal guys in the show (the two black guys with “Fire and Ice” and the one white guy who isn’t the pretty one) were pretty funny. But, Prince just had his time-honored lip-pursed prissy half-grin and gave hours of advice to the girl on how to not be afraid to tell the not-pretty white guy she loves him. (I really should learn their names if I’m going to write about them). Love advice from Prince. Sheesh.

You might notice that none of the interesting things had anything to do with the game. Yeah. No kidding.