Here’s a fun fact: A couch that falls from the back of a pickup truck traveling 30 mph on a suburban street will flip end over end three times before finally skidding to a stop.
I will tell you how I know, in a true story I call “The Couch from Hell.”
A few weeks ago, my brother sent a message to me, something akin to, “I need to get a rid of a couch. Do you want it?”
I’m not the type of guy who turns down a free couch, especially when I know its lineage. My brother is fairly clean and decent, so I knew the couch was mostly pest- and stain-free, possibly a few Doritos crumbs if one plumbed deep enough into the cracks, but nothing like, say, a severed human hand.
Upon seeing the couch, I remembered it was more like an upholstered water buffalo than a traditional couch, a massive two-piece sectional that took up a large portion of a room
We wrestled it out the door and up into my truck, the monstrosity extending several feet past my open tailgate. We tied it down as best we could with bungee cords, carefully moved it to its new home a few miles away and there it sat in a room for a few weeks until I came to the obvious conclusion that the couch was not a good fit.
My brother and I wrestled it back out and onto the truck again and I quickly concocted a couch disposal plan, one that benefited not only me but mankind.
“ I will take this couch to the charity thrift store,” I said. “Someone in our fair community will surely want sectional furniture resembling two upholstered water buffalo and the money they spend will go for the betterment of others, plus I will not have to drive all the way to the dump and pay the $5 residential disposal fee.”
We started on the four-mile journey to the thrift store under sunny conditions. Two miles in, though, the sky suddenly darkened. A raindrop hit my windshield.
“ That’s not good,” I said. “Maybe we can make it before the hard stuff comes down.”
We did not. At the second red light, the heavens opened up and there was not a tarp in sight. The rain had stopped when we entered the thrift store parking lot a few minutes later, but the damage had been done.
“ This is wet,” said the thrift store lady, a keen observer.
“ I’m sure it will dry out pretty quick, being space-age microfiber and all,” I said.
“ We can’t take it.”
That evening, I parked the truck under cover and when morning came, I tried again at another charity thrift store, this time without my brother, who had grown tired of driving around town in a truck with a giant couch on the back.
The second thrift store lady was also a keen observer.
“ It’s wet,” she said.
“ Yeah, but it’s not as wet as it was yesterday,” I said.
We could not come to terms, so I got back in the truck and started toward the office, intending to bite the bullet and take the monster to the dump at lunch. The couch, at least half of it, had something else in mind.
I heard a commotion, looked in my rearview mirror and saw half the sectional flipping wildly down the street behind me, finally coming to rest at the curb. Luckily there were no cars following.
“ You are The Couch from Hell!” I screamed before whipping a U-turn, pulling up behind the monster, putting on my blinkers and summoning help from the office to reload it.
In the end, The Couch from Hell met its doom at the dump, its demonic spirit shattered and crushed. And the world now knows a couch that falls from the back of a pickup truck traveling 30 mph on a suburban street will flip end over end three times before finally skidding to a stop.
Scott Hollifield is editor/GM of The McDowell News in Marion, and a humor columnist. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.