Opinion – 2/24/2006

Published 12:00 am Friday, February 24, 2006

The Panolian: OPINIONS

 From the 2/24/06 issue of The Panolian :                 

Mattress test leaves ‘Princess’ red-faced, dethroned

One of my favorite childhood fairy tales is The Princess and the Pea. As a child I once put a great northern bean under my mattress to see if I was indeed a princess abandoned as a baby and left on the doorstep of my very middle class parents. My imagination was well developed at a very early age.

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Anyway, as the story goes a Prince is looking for a Princess to marry. The only way to weed out all the young ladies without blue blood running coldly through their veins was to test them. A tall stack of mattresses was assembled and a tiny pea was put under them. If the princess were truly of royal heritage, she would toss and turn all night, unable to sleep because of the pea. Her delicate framework could not tolerate such an uncomfortable intrusion.

Okay you say, and the point is what?

Well, dear Don and I have been shopping for new mattresses lately. We’ve looked high (over $3,000) and low (under $1,500). We have ordered videos advertising beds with numbers you can dial to make your side of the bed firmer or softer than your partner’s.

We have sat, bounced, rolled, and laid on conventional sets. A couple of weekends ago we even gave a thorough test (no, not that kind), to a NASA-invented mattress that was supposedly made for space shuttles but was never used for that purpose.

We went to a really big store and walked for about a tenth of a mile to a corner in the back where these beds are displayed. As we approached we saw another couple talking to a salesman about all the wonderful attributes of the beds. You have the Classic, the Deluxe and the European. After talking with the salesman, we discovered the differences in each model – not a lot if you ask me except for the price.

We sat on each of the three beds alternately, finally deciding on the Deluxe to give it a real tryout. (Now stop that! No, it wasn’t that way.)

While the salesman was engaged with the couple that arrived before us, Don and I took off our jackets and shoes and lay down on the bed. Ahhhhhhh, pure heaven. But as I have discovered on my journey to a perfect night’s slumber, any new bed will feel great for a little while.

We turned on our sides facing one another and oblivious to the outside world, began to converse in the sweet, secretive language that has become our own. As we quietly discussed the pros and cons of the bed on which we lay, I heard a distinct male voice announce loudly, "Well, I thought y’all was mannequins!"

Dear Don and I both froze a moment and then rose quickly to discover a man at the foot of "our bed."
"I really thought y’all was mannequins," he repeated.

Okay, time to get up. I am totally embarrassed now. Especially since I didn’t want to get in the bed in the first place. I let my guard down for a moment and let that clever Don talk me into partially disrobing in public and climbing onto a display bed in a mega-furniture store in front of God and everybody. I’m not in the mood to bed hunt anymore.

But, as the man with the big voice wandered off, still repeating to whomever (or whoever) would listen, "I thought they was mannequins," the salesman came over to us. He explained the molecular structure of the mattress and all the reasons it cost well in advance of $3,000 for a queen set. (They don’t make princess sets!) He told us we can get it that day with no sales tax and only the usual delivery charge. They will even cart off our old mattresses. All this for a measly $3,499. What a deal.

Well, I’m sorry to say we passed on that great deal. I tried to explain to dear Don that when you calculate the price out for say ten years, it only comes out to about $29.00 a month. Surely, a good night’s sleep is worth that.

"Don’t you think I’m worth that amount?" I asked.

To which that clever husband of mine eloquently replied, "Baby you ain’t no princess! "

Get the picture?



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