Post-Olympics Salt Lake City is eerily quiet. It’s like Europe just after World War II, when the Nazis were gone, but there were still signs of the occupation. A few flags here and there, maybe a few hardliners who insist it’s not over yet, and a bunch of cattle-people standing outside the Roots stores, waiting for permission to buy hats.
I was with my friends Luscious Malone and Tanny Tantan (names have been changed) at the Gateway Plaza the other night, partially to make fun of people who would stand in line for four hours to buy a hat — a hat advertising an event that is OVER now, I might add — partially to see if we still enjoy Salt Lake when the Olympics aren’t there (we do), but also to convince me to buy a Love Sac.
What is a Love Sac? The Love Sac is a little old place where we can get together. No, sorry, that’s the Love Shack. The Love Sac looks like a huge bean-bag chair, but instead of beans inside, it has the soft foam you’d find in a La-Z-Boy recliner, or in Archie Bunker’s easy chair (or in Archie Bunker himself, for that matter). As such, the Love Sac retains its softness for decades instead of minutes, which is how long bean-bag chairs used to last, back in the ’70s, when they were cool. (Well, as cool as anything could be in the ’70s.)
I’m starting to sound like a commercial now, so let me point out something commercials never tell you: The Love Sac is EXPENSIVE. (Wouldn’t it be great if commercials did tell you that? “You’ll love the Love Sac. If you can afford it. Which you can’t.”) Fortunately, I had Luscious and Tanny with me, and it’s impossible not to spend money when you’re with them. They don’t always exert direct pressure on you, but the influence is there. And if you waver in your decision to spend money, they’ll remind you of the time you spent $200 on a ceramic dog at RC Willey.
What happened was, I was buying furniture for my condo, and Tanny was with me to make sure I didn’t buy anything hideous just because it was cheap. When it came time to buy a bed (I’d been living in a furnished apartment up to then), I wanted to buy a full-size one, not a queen. Queen is too big for one person. If I get married or start sleeping around, I could always upgrade. Tanny insisted it was ridiculous to buy a full when a queen was just $50 more. I was talked into the queen.
Later, I still had money left on my newly opened RC Willey credit card, but I had bought all the furniture I needed. I spotted a realistic-looking, life-size ceramic dog that I thought would make a swell addition to the decor. The dog cost $200. Tanny insisted I should not buy this dog, but buy it I did. His name is Junko, and he’s a good friend. He doesn’t criticize my stupid financial decisions, anyway.
Those are the facts of the story. But whenever Tanny tells it — which is every time I’m considering not buying something — the price difference between the two beds gets smaller, and the cost of Junko the fake dog gets larger. Currently, Junko was priced at $5,000, and the queen-size bed was only a nickel more than the full-size. “You’ll spend $5,000 on a fake dog, but you won’t spend a few hundred on the Love Sac?!” was the general tone of Tanny’s remarks in the Love Sac store.
So I have a Love Sac now. It occupies most of the living room, between the couch and Junko. It’s so comfortable, I could sleep on it — which means the bed I was talked into buying was a waste of money. Who’s the dumb one now, Tanny?!!
It was Luscious who made the comment about post-Olympics Salt Lake being like post-World War II Europe. If Luscious wrote a newspaper column, she might have included that observation in it, but since she doesn't, I did it for her.
One of the deleted scenes on the "Waiting for Guffman" DVD includes Parker Posey yelling, "Who's on top and who's on bottom now, huh?!" That's what I pictured when I wrote the last line of the column.