Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Ikea sucks swedish meatballs

We went to the Port Authority and arrived at door #5. That’s we saw them. Hundreds of them. Yacking on cell-phones. Hoarding the oxygen. Bulbous and porous handfuls of sweaty flesh. Bellies soft with stupidity.

“This isn’t the fucking line is it?” I asked. “This can’t be the line.”

It stretched to Harlem. I was pretty sure we’d never make it on the bus. The line was too goddamn long. But as it disappeared through door #5, it appeared as though we might make it on. Suddenly, however, the line stopped right as we were about to board.

“No more seats,” said the woman in charge. “Only standing room.”

“Standing room?” we both asked in unison. “What the hell is standing room?”

But before she could answer, the crowd behind us had nudged us aboard. We discovered that "standing room" meant two things:

1) Standing in the middle of the isle of the charter bus
2) Holding on for your fucking life.

I gripped and held. For we were aboard and on our way. On the free Ikea bus to Jersey.

It reminded me of the time I was late for my train in Europe and had to ride in the cargo car. Only now I felt more like a chihuahua's ass drippings.

“This feels European,” I commented to the Rican.

“Why?” he asked.

“I don’t know. Carpooling to a destination seems like a responsible thing a European would do. If we were big, stupid Americans we’d be driving to Ikea, polluting the air with big, stupid gas guzzlers.”

“No.” He shook his head as we stood in the crowded middle isle. “It doesn’t feel European. It feels Mexican.”

When we arrived, we discovered that Ikea is probably Mexico’s cousin. Cheap stuff, little order, and delinquent children overran the floor, like they were auditioning for the movie, City of God. (Yeah, I know that’s Brazil.) As I watched the swarms of screaming kids circle around the floor, I had only one thought. What the fuck were these parents thinking, bringing their kids along to Ikea? Because really. What were they going to add to the experience? Will the sleeping infant be able to help the arguing parents come to a decision between a new chartreuse throw or an extra set of curtains? Will the screaming toddler be able to provide insights on wallpapering Vs hiring a painter? Or were they really there to do the duty they seemed to be sent there to perform: stomping on my feet.

“I’m getting my tubes tied tomorrow,” I leaned over and whispered to the Rican. In the country of chaos, I was trying my best to eliminate any confusion.

But despite the disorder, we had to focus. Screaming bastards or not, it was time to turn our new home into Omm.

(Wow. I am super gay.)

After a few hours, we had to put a temporary hold on the torture in order to refurnish our empty stomachs. The only option for food was the Ikea cafeteria, so we grudgingly joined the line of oversized customers eager to stuff their faces with Swedish meatballs.

As we picked up our trays, I couldn’t help picturing the Swedish chef from the Muppets preparing the food. But when I took my first bite, I realized that my imagination was pretty accurate.

“This food looks like it would be good,” The Rican observed. “But when you eat it, it’s just crap.” This was becoming a common theme. The beds seemed stylish and comfy, but were like sleeping on top of a snoring grandpa. The pots and pans looked functional, but during cooking, the handles get hot and bite you. And the although the food, appeared tasty, it could have only been prepared by a chef with the brain of a puppet.

Hours pass. Days maybe. Lamps. Loveseats. Spatulas. It's a blur. All I know is that it ended. So we found a sales associate and asked him how we could get out furniture and end the pain, man!

"Oh you guys gotta go back and get da shit."

You mean the fucking giant sofas and shelves? ....we, uh... we just wanna get it delivered.

"I know, but you gotta get one of dees carts and, you know, put da shit on it, and take it over there," he said, pointing to a line of people that stretched to Rhode Island.

We thanked him, checked the time and realized it would be totally fucking impossible to order our furniture and board the last bus to New York before it abandoned us in this hell. Frustrated, we marched out the door and quickly boarded our last chance for escape. As we sat down, thankfully securing seats this time, I looked down at the bag I was carrying. And I realized, uh…we never got in line. We, um…

“Babes…we didn’t pay for shit.

We just jacked Ikea. Looking around to check for swat teams, I felt bit of tugging in the pit of my stomach. At first I thought my super strict Christian upbringing was making me feel bad for stealing. But upon closer examination I realized it was not guilt but regret.

“Damnit,” I said to the Rican, “Why didn’t we take more?!”

But there wasn’t room for anything else. Cause everybody left their common courtesy behind in favor of mexi-packing the bus full of overcrowding shit. Bags were the size of obese Americans. Cardboard boxes seemed to stretch as long as backyard diving boards. And then, of course – children.

As I listened to a screaming toddler while simultaneously being poked by the corner of a flat cardboard box scrunched next to my seat, I started to realize that children were a lot like the items sold at Ikea. Lunch looked yummy but tasted like a Dr. Scholl’s shoe insole (used.) The beds had comfy potential, but felt like sleeping on old man flesh (hairy.) So then there’s the kid. He looks cute and cuddly, but he’ll start screaming his fucking fuzzy head off when you forget to do the littlest thing. Like feed him. Even once! Forget Swedish meatballs, this is false advertising at its most misleading.

“Well,” said the Rican, trying to raise his voice above the decibel of the screaming child, “at least we got all this shit for free.”

For a second I agreed that our heist made it all worth it. But then my toe got smushed for the eight time by an out-of-control toddler. Nothing is free, bitches. Nothing. Not even stolen pillows.

Update: I'm pretty pumped you guys all hate Ikea as much as me. Feel free to share your miserable stories and keep the comments coming. Maybe Ikea will see it and feel compelled to clean up their act. But, maybe not...


MetroDad said...

(1) Going to Ikea is like going to Hell. Taking the bus to Ikea is like having to suck Satan's dick when you arrive in Hell. Dealing with the bratty kids at Ikea is like spending eternal damnation getting fucked up the ass by Satan.

(2) Next time you go, search Craigslist for one of those "Man with a Van" services. They charge about $50-75 to bring all your crap back to the city but you avoid all the taxes.

(3) You can steal almost anything from Ikea. I always make sure to go to that crappy little commisary downstairs and steal a few jars of Swedish caviar, smoked salmon, and cookies. I figure it's a fair price to pay for the fact that you're going to have to return to Ikea a week later because the idiots left out 10 of the screws you need to complete your cabinet. Never fucking fails.

Anonymous said...

I love the way you write because you make the reader feel your pain.

But come on, are all of these experiences you write about really that bad? I mean what about the good stuff that happens to you? Is that just boring? Because if it is I'm not asking you to write about it.

- Puerto

melvin said...

i hate buses especially long ones with kids on it. ugha. and ikea, i agree, isnt worth it. but it made a great blog post.

concha said...

writing about good stuff sucks. hm...i smell a new blog.

Jaime said...

What did you steal? I want the list.

Anonymous said...

Glad I could help with your brainstorming.

- Puerto

S* said...

I'm digging your evocative writing style. That's all.

(Apologies if this shows up ten times. Beta Blogger Blows.)

El Padrino said...

that's awesome that you got free shit for that terrible experience, im the asshole that waits on line with a giant box the size of a plane , i'm also the asshole you saw outside tying that smae box to the top of my civic

im such a loser

archeress said...

There's an Ikea in Paramus that is nearly empty during the week. It's still too new to be as filthy as the one next to Newark airport. Rent van, go to Paramus, 10 minutes west of the GWB. You can park right next to the door, I shit you not. And there are other furniture places to shop along Route 4. Good luck with your new place concha!

concha said...

while i was pumped to rent a van, unfortunately the rican refused to ever go back and thus made me split shipping costs with him. shipping costs that could have bought us another couch. bastard.

Laurel said...

i hate ikea and screaming children with equal passion

Anonymous said...

Going to ikea is comparable to going to old navy, or ellis island for that matter, all the immigrants that flood the place with their awful spawns make it unbearable. Half the time I'm wondering if I'm in line at a store or customs.

element said...

This is what you do.

You go to Ikea to look at all the stuff in person - to see exactly how crappy it is or is not. You pick up little things like kitchen utensils (usually followed by PAYING for them). You also pick up a catalog.

Then you go home, circle the things you liked in the catalog, and order the stuff over the phone. Then they deliver it to you!

Mihoe said...

I have stolen somthing at Ikea too, but I dont think they missed it. And it was unintentionally.

But as a scandinavian I have to love Ikea and I think we have grown to the task.

fashion.faux.pas said...


I'm from norway, but I lived in Sydney for five-six yrs, and thought surely, Ikea can't be as big and crammed down under as back in ol' Oslo.
Oh my. Was I wrong.
However, good to know that it's a universal thing!

Anonymous said...

Face it, we all go to Ikea for the same reason: The price is reasonable and it usually doesn't look like an old couch from Granny's house she donated to your new apartment.
P.S.: Welcome to the world jackass,if you want to live where there are no children move to an old folks home and play bocci with incontinent people. I'm not saying there aren't a lot of rude parents out there who ought to at least pretend they're trying, but your blood pressure and shrink (I'm sorry "counselor") bill would go down if you'd just relax and enjoy the ride.
Sorry I don't feel your pain.

Anonymous said...

I just read your post, and I am overcome with the feeling that you are a spoiled brat. Do you earn anything for yourself at all or do your parents hand you everything?

concha said...

anoymous strikes again! thanks for the laugh, jackasses. and now i must get back to work so i can pay for my ikea trip. and you know, my student loans n stuff cause i put myself through school.

but thanks, really. it's idiots like you that keep my fire alive.

Vitamin J said...

Best time to go to IKEA? Day before Thanksgiving, about 90 minutes before they close. We did that twice and both times, it was like a ghost town. Of course, that's in the Chicago 'burbs, so the ones around New York might be a different story.

Anonymous said...

those fuckers broke my roof rack, and i got nothing for free...all for you hairy old man mattress. enjoy.

Anonymous said...

by the way, the roof rack comment, that was courtesy of me, the pita. obviously.

Maulleigh said...

thank you for being nailed to that cross for me. I've considered going and now I NEVER WILL!!

angelina said...

Gees. I thought it was a funny story, but FUCK ME!

What the hell do I know, aside from 50+ hour work weeks and $400/month student loans, and well, meh. Fuck it. We're all such spoiled brats.

concha said...

really, i am spolied. for i am not blessed with one. but with two jobs. AND i actually do consider that a blessing!

Anonymous said...

Dear anonymous (you know who you are), complicated, she may be, but she works hard, makes her own way and earns her own way.



also this, it's okay to not appreciate kids as long as you don't kick them, plus it's sunday night, aren't you supposed to be at your baptist church leading the youth service.

concha said...

oh, snap! dad has come to the defense! thanks, dude. (no, bitch that is not me...)

Anonymous said...


concha said...

well, that's an interesting proposition. and i'm flattered, cause i assume not everyone is lucky enough to have this opportunity. but i'm a little busy with a puerto rican one at the moment. but again, thanks for the offer.

Anonymous said...

I LOVE IKEA! :) You have to try the chicken strips. They're soooooo good with chocolate milk. The meatballs are nasty, though.

Kaiser Dämmerung said...

And to think, many of my coworkers are rabid with the idea of Ikea bringing a store over to this side of the hemisphere (I'm in Puerto Rico). Hell, even I was. After reading this, Ikea and their screaming gremlin infested corridors and disgusting food can go straight to fucking hell. There's enough of those kinds of stores over here now, packed with screaming children AND adults.