This story was one I wrote for Story A Day May one year. I’ve expanded some of my SADM stories, but this one will stand as it is, I think. I want to thank our friend Bob Scott for the inspiration: he sent me a picture of a couch and asked what I thought of it. I liked it, actually.
Here’s an excerpt.
Lonnie’s Ugly Couch
excerpt from “Lonnie, Me, and the Ugliest Couch in the World
by Marian Allen
“There’s no accounting for taste, Lon,” I said.
“Well, I know, but look at it,” he said.
“I’m not looking at it twice,” I said. “That’s above and beyond. I told you I’d help you move it, but you never said nothing about looking at it.”
“I hear ya, Tiny,” he said. “I think I owe you a couple extra slices of pizza for that.”
Lonnie’s wife, Leona, had gone and bought a couch and told them her husband would pick it up. Lonnie approved of saving eighty bucks on delivery and borrowed the truck from work.
Now, when you’re the biggest guy around, like I am, you just naturally expect that any moving that gets done, you’re going to be part of the crew. So here I was next to him on the loading dock, waiting for the guy to bring papers for Lonnie to sign, trying to keep from looking at Leona’s new couch.
“Know how many couches this makes that we’ve had,” Lonnie said, as if I cared, “including sofas, divans, davenports, and loveseats? Ten. Over time, you know, counting ones folks give us when we couldn’t afford to buy any.”
The man came back with the papers and Lonnie signed them.
“Wait a minute,” he said, holding the man back from his work. “Before you go in: Is this the ugliest couch you ever seen or not?”
It was stuffed so thick on the arms they looked like upholstered balloons, and the rest was so thin it was practically a bench with a towel over it. The pattern looked to me like pink and green chickens, but the man said it was peonies. But, he admitted, kinda squashed-up, draggle-tailed peonies.
We lashed the couch into the truck bed and got in the truck.
At the gas station, Lonnie got out to pump and I heard him hollering at somebody. I scrooched around to see if it was somebody I knew, too, but it was a guy in a van with out-of-state plates on it.
Lonnie hollered, “I want you to come over here and look at something. I ask you, is this the ugliest couch you ever seen, or what?”
The guy whistled and said, “If that was my couch, I’d shoot it in the head and bury it after dark.”
This story will be in my upcoming collection of Lonnie and Tiny stories.
A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: Write about one of your couches.