I am writing this while sitting on a loveseat that I bought for $20 at a Goodwill in Manassas, Virginia when I first moved away from home in 1999. I bought it before I met my wife. I had moved into an apartment that was a bit to big for me and a bit to renty for my income. I had precious little furniture. I did not have a bed. It came with a matching couch that I slept on until my father found out and paid a mover to bring a bed to me from home.

It was old, tired, and not particularly stylish even then.

I had to leave the couch behind when I moved out of Manassas, but the loveseat came with me. At that point I guess we started calling it a “couch” although that’s not technically true. It is nevertheless a couchlike piece of furniture, for years the only one we had.

We moved it five more times.

Most of the claw damage to the upholstery was done by two cats that have now passed on, although no doubt their fur is still somewhere in the crevices. When we brought my son home for the first time, we sat with him on this couch. We measured his early growth by how much of a cushion he took up. I was sitting on this couch, at this end of the couch, when he toddled over to me and said his first word.

This couch has been with me for three generations of the Playstation, three of the Nintendo.

I once put a plate with a hamburger on the seat, turned on the television, then sat down on the hamburger. My wife laughed and laughed. She still does.

Today we are replacing this old, tired, ugly, and frankly kind of gross couch. The springs are shot. The upholstery is shot. The kid takes up almost half of the couch on his own now.

Truth to tell, I am not going to miss it. I am excited to see the new couch. This one has been part of my home for nearly half my life, and there are a lot of memories associated with it. But we are long past the time where it makes a better memory than a piece of furniture.

Thank you, couch. You were there when I needed you. You held up all of our butts for many years with a marginally acceptable degree of competence. But now it is time for me to sit on other things.

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