Bang Your Head Here

Posted by mwallach on August 24, 2012 in Crazy Follows Me Everywhere |

Dear That’s Life,
Sunday’s events would have made for a great column. I had adamantly and furiously insisted my husband wear a tuxedo to a wedding I was convinced was “black tie,” only to arrive at the hall and see that only he, and the wait staff, were dressed alike. It was not one of my finer moments. But why would I bother sharing anything besides what just took place about an hour ago, the details of which have left me wondering if my life really is an ongoing practical joke.

To shorten the beginning of a long story, my husband and I had ordered a headboard for our bedroom. Initially told it would take 6-8 weeks to arrive, we subsequently waited about 4 months. Delivery was scheduled and we were looking forward. The day before its expected arrival, we realized there would be no one home at the assigned delivery time for which we had been given a 10am-2p window. Having left two messages in an effort to reschedule, and after the supposed delivery had never been confirmed, our calls were not returned and we went to work.

Throughout the day, I checked in with my husband to see if he had heard from them. He had not, and even after I arrived home, there was no note, message or evidence of an attempted delivery. Approaching 5pm, I again consulted my husband. He sent an email to the salesman who helped us initially. About ten minutes later, we received a response and were informed that the headboard would be delivered in an hour.

At 7pm, our house phone rang. It was the delivery service from the furniture store. He said the headboard was on his truck and he wanted to know if we still wanted him to come. Having already put in a long day and with bedtime approaching for my children, I contemplated asking them to come back another time. I decided to go through with it despite the situation.
“Well,” I said with some frustration at the late hour, “so much for between 10-2pm.” A simple explanation or apology on his behalf would have ended the entire conversation, but instead, all he said was, “Oops.”

“What?” I said, with some disbelief. “Oops??” I reminded him that it was five hours past the latest time for delivery and it was now 7pm. I explained that no one had confirmed the appointment to begin with and my repeated calls were left unanswered. I was about to start putting my kids to bed, and “Oops” was all he could say?

“Oops!” he said again. Shocked at what I was hearing, I grew increasingly frustrated. “OOPS?” I replied. “Are you kidding?” As if to make the events better and offer an explanation, he said, “I am not saying ‘oops’ to you or at the situation, it’s just that I’m high.” And while I will give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that he meant to say he was “giddy” and not actually “high”, that moment confirmed a long held belief of mine – that I really have heard just about everything.

He promised they were about 5 minutes away and though the hour was late, he did not think it would take long to install the headboard. “Fine,” I said, having decided that my being in the house when these guys were here as opposed to having someone deal with them was of utmost importance, despite my annoyance.

Upon arrival, they inspected my staircase and other areas of the house. I was then informed they did not think there was enough clearance to bring the headboard up the stairs and into our room. After asking him what the other options were, I then noticed he was looking out my bedroom window while something to himself. I immediately figured out his contingency plan.”You are NOT bringing my headboard in through the window,” I said with complete annoyance and total authority. With barely an inch to spare, however, the headboard was successfully brought up to our room. I left them to do the installation.

Returning a few moments later, the three men were muttering to each other. “Is there a problem?” I asked. “We had to move the bed,” said the man with whom I had been dealing. The beds had been pulled out from the wall, which I expected to happen. “They go back,” I said, knowing that they just needed to be pushed back into place. “No,” he said, “we had to move the beds.” All of a sudden, I understood what he meant.

Because of the light fixtures on the wall and the width of the headboard, our beds needed to be moved about 7 inches to the left. Out came the pre-existing furniture and with that, my husband’s side of the room was completely out of whack. Things were scattered everywhere. At that point, however, there was nothing much to do. They finished the installation and I met them downstairs.

“Please sign at the bottom,” he said, presenting the delivery slip. I signed my name in the box at the bottom. “Not in the box!” he screamed. “Not in the box!” Beneath the box was a line that read “Customer’s Signature” which I had not noticed. At this point, however, I could not believe I was being reprimanded in my own home, especially after what had already taken place. “Are you kidding me?” I yelled back. With that, I resigned my name, gave them a tip, ushered them out and closed the door behind them.

Returning upstairs to look at our new headboard, I quickly noticed a terrible odor coming from my room. The smells of smoke and sweat were everywhere – a parting gift left by the delivery men. Even after opening the windows, there was very little relief. Finally, lighting a few matches and then quickly extinguishing them offered relief and the odor was gone.

Of course, I enjoyed the irony of using matches to rid my room of cigarette smell much more than getting yelled in my house by a man who admitted he was high. At least now, when I feel the need to bang my head against the wall out of complete frustration, I have a nice cushy headboard to soften the blow. And thank G-d, it does not smell at all.
As Seen in the South Shore Standard Aug ’12

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