My suburban New York childhood included its share of time well wasted in
front of the T.V. Memories have faded regarding many of the actual programs,
but some of the commercials have burned an indelible image in my brain. One
such ineradicable icon was a little girl who single-handedly converted a
sofa into a double bed. When she completed her feat, she proceeded to jump
up and down on the mattress. Her name was Bernadette.
When you actually think about it, not that much has really changed with
hide-a-beds since the heyday of the Castro Convertible. Hide-a-beds fulfill
a definite need. They are versatile pieces of furniture designed for
double duty seating by day and instant guest room by night. Ingenious,
right? The answer is yes, but with qualifications. We acknowledge the value
of dual purpose furniture. It offers a solution to those whose living space
would otherwise be overwhelmed by a surfeit of furniture.
The argument for including convertible sofas in our cavalcade of C.R.U.D. is
composed of several threads. As practical as they may seem, when was the
last time you actually slept on a hide-a-bed? Or, have you simply reached
the stage where you require your own hotel room as opposed to staying with
friends or distant relatives? If you enjoy a night of tossing and turning
in the futile search for a comfortable position where you are not being
probed by wire coils, then a hide-a-bed will fill the bill. When you wake
up exhausted in the morning, you can re-live the entire night’s discomfort by
examining the mattress’s imprint on your skin. There are expensive and newer
models today that have successfully addressed the torture rack issue. Yet,
the majority of sofa beds that make our acquaintance in our
organizing/downsizing practice would be better described as vintage.
We believe that sofa beds hang around way too long because they are
difficult to move. Once a hide-a-bed enters the home, it remains as a
fixture until the next move or the house catches on fire. When the décor
changes, sofa beds are either banished to unimportant rooms or are swathed
in sheets and slipcovers to hide the wear and stains. They weigh a ton.
They are unforgiving. Even manoeuvring one of them out the door could result
in unanticipated repairs. You will want to insure that your disability policy
is up to date before foolishly attempting to move your sofa bed. You will
be seeing a lot of your chiropractor and physio. So you see, finding a
recipient for a used sofa bed is not without its nearly insurmountable
We are afraid there are no straightforward solutions for unloading
unwanted sofa beds. Most organizations that specialize in distributing
second-hand goods through sale and donation will not accept them for health
reasons. Private placement through friends and family may be your only
recourse. Keep the number for a junk remover handy. Remember this
experience and buy a blow-up bed for your own occasional overnight guests.