DR FRANK JACKSON, 59A, PRINCES ROAD, BRIGHTON, EAST SUSSEX BN2 3RH
TEL. 01273 603766 - EMAIL [email protected] - www.fulltable.com/fj
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The Revolt of the Furniture
Jason ran down the steps to his small flat, feeling in good spirits. He opened the front door and looked around. The place was very shabby and untidy, but that was the kind of young man that he was. Going into the kitchen, he put on the kettle to boil some water for a cup of tea. Then he went into the living-room and threw himself onto the sofa, and put his feet up comfortably on the arm. Suddenly, without warning, the sofa lurched violently and threw him onto the floor. He was amazed. Picking himself up, he went to sit down again.
‘No, you don’t! Get off me!’ the sofa shouted. ‘You’re not sitting on me!’ Jason stood dumbfounded. Had the sofa really shouted at him? He went back to the sofa and sat on it firmly. No sooner had he done so, when it pitched him off again, onto his hands and knees. ‘I warned you!’ cried the sofa. ‘You are not going to sit on me! Is that clear?’ Jason’s head reeled. ‘Why not?’ he said plaintively. ‘’Cos I’m fed up with you. You come in, treat me like I’m nothing, and just put your feet up on me. I’ve had enough! So you’re not sitting on me, and that’s final.’ And the sofa subsided into angry silence.
Jason, by now not sure whether he was dreaming or not, stood looking at the sofa for a moment. Then he walked across to the sofa-futon on the other side of the room, and sat firmly down on it. No sooner had he done so, than it too pitched him abruptly onto the floor!
It said very firmly in a musical woman’s voice, ‘ No, you are not sitting on me either. Go away and sit on that miserable old thing over there. He has no taste or style, and he’s old and useless anyway. A waste of space, if you ask me’.
‘I heard that!’ shouted the sofa, furiously. ‘Just because you think you’re posh, and make yourself into a bed, you think you’re better than anyone else! I’m a sofa, and proud of it! I have always had my uses’ he added somewhat pompously. ‘You silly old windbag’, replied the futon, disdainfully. ‘You’re just an overstuffed piece of old fabric left over from the past’.
Oo-oh! Lah-de-dah! Lah-de-dah! Just because you come from Japan, you think you can give yourself airs and graces! You’re nothing but a rolled-up bed! ‘ ‘How dare you! said the futon, furiously. ‘I am a very useful and versatile item of furniture! Which is more than can be said for you!’ ‘Yeah, and I heard that!’ came a voice from the bedroom. ‘Don’t you make nasty remarks about beds!’ ‘Oh, so what’s your problem, then?’ asked the sofa belligerently. By this time, Jason’s head was swimming. ‘ I think I will lie down for a while’. ‘Not on me you won’t!’ shouted the bed from next door.
The sofa and the futon broke into a noisy argument.
‘You conceited little trollop!’
You shabby old piece of rubbish!’
‘You rude little piece of wood and cloth!’
You miserable stuffed excuse for a sofa!’
‘Glorified little apology of a bed!’
‘Bad-tempered old piece of clutter!’
‘Excuse me,’ said Jason, faintly, ‘but what have I done wrong?’
‘Well, for a start,’ snapped the sofa, ‘You never say “please” or “thank you” to any of us! You just put yourself down anywhere you please. It’s one thing we are all agreed on, even madam here’. The futon glared, as only futons can, but said nothing. ‘That’s right,’ shouted the bed from next door. ‘You just throw yourself under my unwashed old duvet and go to sleep. You haven’t bothered to change my sheets for ages! It’s no wonder we’re all bad-tempered. You should hear what the washing-machine and refrigerator think of you.’ ‘Yes, and I could do with a nice new cover as well’, cried the sofa. “Not that it would make much difference to you’, said the futon, in a nasty way. ‘Oh, be quiet,’ replied the sofa irritably.
‘But from now on, you will be jolly polite to us. Otherwise, you’ll be standing up the rest of your life’. And all the furniture cried out ‘Hear, hear’. ‘All right’, said Jason despairingly. ‘I don’t seem to have much choice’. ‘No, you haven’t.’ replied the sofa cheerfully. And so it was that every day, for the next few months, whenever Jason returned to his flat, he always said ‘Please’ and ‘Thank you’.
However, he met a girl who he really liked, and who liked him very much in return. The first time he asked her back to his flat, she was very puzzled about why he seemed to speak to his own furniture. She felt it was rather odd at first, but she got used to it after a while. But she did think his flat was very untidy, and, because she was good at making things, she soon made a new cover for the sofa, washed the duvet cover and changed the sheets, and carefully brushed down the futon, and generally tidied up.
One evening, as Jason got back, the furniture was waiting for him. ‘That’s a really nice girl you’ve got there’, said the sofa approvingly. ‘I think she is very pretty’. said the futon. ‘And she’s got really nice legs’, remarked the sofa, rather wickedly. ‘We all think you should marry her’. ‘Definitely’. said the futon. To end this story, Jason did indeed marry the girl, much to the furniture’s delight. And so it was that Jason found peace and happiness, which had all come about through the match-making of his own furniture!.
Frank Jackson (18/11/06)