Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The happiest place on Long Island

Yesterday Ty and I went to Ikea to get some kitchen stuff, seating, and adorable, inexpensive, anthropomorphic Scandinavian plush toys. And Swedish meatballs. I restrained myself and had steamed vegetables with them instead of potatoes, and only two small bites from the pool of lingonberries on the side of my plate, so the overall diet damage wasn't too bad.

Speaking of which, I'm down three pounds and feeling a little bit better. I still think there should be an activity entry in the Weight Watchers system for "lugging a writhing, screaming eight-month-old around while enduring head-butts and kicks to your breasts and genitals, 17 minutes," and that such an activity should be worth at least seven points, but, hey, I've discovered the delicious little Weight Watchers one-point cakes, so why ask for the moon when you have the stars.

Ikea during the week is an entirely different animal than Ikea on the weekend. It was so calm that Ty and I half expected to find Tord Bjorklund himself noshing on reasonably-priced gravlax in a quiet, sunny corner of the cafeteria, contemplating home-furnishings domination via a new line of brilliantly-designed sofabeds. There was enough room in the aisles that we were easily able to maneuver around the obligatory nitwit in four-inch heels who was there to buy two picture frames and score a day's worth of leisurely-paced windowshopping, and insisted on walking right smack in the middle of the footpath. Most of the children there with their parents were also preschool-aged or younger, so it hurt less than it would with some of the bigger kids when they hurled themselves at us from atop a Kramfors sofa or Lack coffee table.

I love Ikea. I really enjoy the meatballs, but I especially enjoy the fantasy that the chain wraps up for you in a saffron-colored bow, for only $5.99. Turn this corner, and you're a chic Stockholm bachelorette outfitting your new apartment, complete with a white leather chair and throwback shag rug. Head that way, and you and your spouse are pioneers in the country, building your own log cabin and your own kitchen to go with it. Like butcher block countertops? Saw your own! You may have entered the store on a low-carb diet, but, by george, you're going home with that pine bread box, and also with a festive green ceramic fondue pot! Each well-lit display offers you a peek into a new world--not unlike a Disney theme park. You can touch and play and build and arrange, and everything is brightly-colored and upbeat.

What surprising places make you happy?


Blogger Tink said...

Target. But not Wal-Mart. That place makes me feel like murdering someone with a clothes hanger. Of course there's the coffee shop down the street. Oh! And the bookstore! I want to LIVE there. But I guess none of those are too surprising hm?

5:29 PM  
Anonymous wordgirl said...

Our local zoo...which is awesome and has created such good memories for me all of my life.

10:11 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Harridan said...

I get similar feelings of anything-is-possible-ness from Whole Foods.

Which plush animals did you get? We now own the alligator, the weasel and the beaver (beaver is the favorite at bedtime).

10:05 PM  
Anonymous V-Grrrl said...

Office supply stores always make me feel it's possible for life to be well ordered and lovely, even if it's busy.

Hallmark stores, which can be so cheesy, still emanate little waves of love and happiness.

I don't normally buy expensive cosmetics, but I like to go into stores like Ulta and Sephora and imagine how the right lip gloss could change my life!

3:35 AM  
Blogger Mignon said...

The DMV, which makes me feel sane, clean, and brilliant.

(I bought the froggie with the zipper mouth for Quinn and the elephant with strange tattoos for Madeleine.)

5:18 PM  
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