A queen bed for $160. Pretty great deal, right? It’s not super fancy, it doesn’t have four posts or a large headboard. It’s not a top of the line model or anything. It is comfy though, a ramshackle memory foam monstrosity that’s pieced together from assorted causality. How you ask? Oh, you didn’t? Well in this case we’ll pretend that your call to adventure is greater than your apathy. Let’s go into the coincidence and happenstance that brought together disparate bits to make a $160 queen sized bed.
Our story starts in Montreal, where I happened to be checking out Just For Laughs. I’d loaded my evenings with comedy gigs, enough to keep me giddy for almost 2 weeks. I’d been lacking in things to do during the days though. Montreal is a gorgeous city with stately old architecture and dismissive, pretty people. It was fun to look around, but company was hard to find. “Stop being a shit” my friend would tell me “join couch surfing, go to an event.” She was right, and within an hour of making an account I was heading along to a park barbecue meet up. I know that none of this sounds bed-like, but I’m getting there. Good things take time. Are you cheesemaker quality or not? Anywhey… Met a bunch of people who I spent time hanging out with for the remainder of my Montreal trip. One of the guys was heading to Toronto in a few months, so we exchanged contact details and agreed to get in touch when he arrived.
Skip forwards a few months. I’d found a flat, and the former occupant left their shitty single bed. Whatever, a free bed was a free bed. My friend messaged me when he touched down in Toronto. We hung out, things were good. He let me know that one of his friends was giving away a double bed, was I interested? Of course I was, because if there’s anything I love more than a free bed its a free double bed. That’s like, twice the free or something. I’m not a maths person. I went out to his friend’s family’s house and picked up the bed: Double bed mattress, box spring and frame. Perfect. Also (once again) free.
Time went on. Lots of time. I still hung out with this guy and at some point he introduced me to one of his friends. We dated briefly. I found out it was her bed that I now owned, which had an amusing symmetry when she stayed over. Things ended on friendly enough terms, but the bed remained.
Another time shift. I’d stopped hanging out with this friend, not for any particularly menacing reasons, but we just drifted a little. It’s alright, I had other friends. I had two very close friends living here for a year in fact. They needed a bed and ended up nabbing one from IKEA. A nice mid-level queen sized memory foam bed. Eschewing any extras, they simply left the mattress on the floor like a futon. It was outstanding having them here for as long as I did, but they left maybe 2 months ago.
Having nowhere to put the bed (it’s not exactly compact) they offered it to me for $150. A good deal including all the bedding (and it was a queen rather than a double. EXPANDED STARFISHING), plus any way to help them out before they left was gravy. I’ve been using the bed, it’s great, but it would be nice not being on the ground. I’ve developed this unenviable habit of painfully headbutting the bedside table in the middle of the night (the Pokémon training is strong with this one. Blame my snorlax kigurumi). Are you guys wondering how this is connected? I’ll get there, geez (spoiler: it’s not too exciting and entirely low-stakes).
I was holding my old bed for friends in an effort to pay it forward. It took them too long to pick it up though, so I put it on the lawn outside my house. I left for 90 minutes and by the time I got back it was all gone. Except for the frame. Odd I thought and left it out there for someone to pick up. People will take anything around here. Nobody did though, nobody. So I thought fuck it and brought it back inside. I still wanted a boxspring/foundation to lift the bed up and elevate me beyond bedside table headbutting level, so I went out to search.
There’s a Brick furniture store at the end of my road. Maybe 10 minutes walk. I went in and asked some dude about boxsprings. He admitted that they’re all the same and my best bet was to just get the cheapest one I could find. He suggested the clearance section upstairs. I went up and looked around. Everything was part of a queen set. I asked one of the guys working if any were standalone. “Yeah, there’s one that’s been reduced. Wanna see it?” he asked. I nodded my agreement and he pulled me over. There it was. Priced down from $175 to $8. “What’s wrong with it?” I asked. He replied that it was just a bit dirty, it was a floor model and they wanted to shift it. I looked, smelled it and realised that I was just gonna cover it in a fitted sheet anyway. Perfect. $9.05 after tax. I looked at the base and asked the salesperson how much it cost. $69.90 she said. I noticed that the model she had up on her screen said “fits twin/double/queen/king”. She mentioned that they’re usually variable, able to fit all bed sizes. I paid for my boxspring and left.
Looking in the hallway back home, I realised that the frame left over from my old double was held together by a bunch of wingnuts. It was virtually identical to the one at the store. I tried fiddling around and pow, queen sized frame. Now all I need to do is get a friend to help me lug a light boxspring 800m (rather than paying $70 delivery) and I’m set. Queen bed for $160.
I love it when a plan comes together. Especially when I didn’t know I was planning it.