Jan29

Anger Management

burying my anger on my way to the theaterI had some anger issues today at IKEA. They seem to have been buried with the snow though. It’s alright now, so I can talk about it without throwing little pencils around the room.

IKEA is always very crowded on the weekend. And then there’s the New Jersey factor. It’s not a pretty trip out there. But I knew that. It all started when we were in the good ol’ Poäng corner, trying to pick the right replacement cushion for our one and only Pöang (yes, we are the poor members of the family with only one Poäng, but things might change later in the year). We were going to write down the location of the cushion that we liked, but realized we didn’t have a pen on us. So we separated in what seemed like a very easy mission: to find one of those little pencils. Right. I took one of those mystery shortcuts that somehow transport you to the other end of the store, and all of a sudden I was surrounded by little screaming kids, banging on little cartoonish closet doors and jumping on little tables and chairs. I scanned the area quickly, and found no pencils. I turned around to get back to where I came from, but I couldn’t find my passage anymore. I was trapped in mini-IKEA. After a few confusing seconds when I feared I would never see Brent again, I found it, tucked in a little corner, disguised among all the cartoonish furniture: the shortcut. I ran through, as if it was going to disappear in the next two seconds, and kept running all the way back to the Poängs. And there was Brent, with two little pencils in hand.

Okay, the story of the restaurant anger situation will be much shorter. Crazy huge line. I stand, Brent goes hunting for a table. The line doesn’t move. Time goes by very slowly, and I start to look around at my fellow shoppers and can only see them as enemies. Half an hour later, I walk out with my tray all the way to the end of the restaurant, where Brent has found us a table with a view of Newark Airport.

Downstairs it wasn’t easy either. We did find some good stuff. A new lamp for the bedroom, a comfy cushion for the Poäng in dark blue (very concealing for Margo’s hair), some shelf dividers, a few other little things. And then comes checkout time. Brent runs back to check something and there I am, standing in front of forty different lines, weighing my options. And then I see the self-checkout line. It seems like a good idea, right? Less than 10 items? Sure! I’ve done this before at Home Depot! I get up to my register, and as I’m trying to figure out how it works, I hear some robot voices around me, coming from all the cashiers. A few seconds later I would get the message from my own cashier. “Unexpected item found in the bagging area”. Loud and reproachful. Every time I succeeded in scanning something (which wasn’t easy, and I did have to punch in the bar code numbers for two of the items), I would put them in the bagging area, and the cashier robot lady would start it again. “Unexpected item found in the bagging area, you dork!”, I yell back. After around 5 minutes and some swearing in both English and Spanish, I get my credit card receipt, and march in triumph to the exit.

Back on the bus, I call my dad. He had been at IKEA a few days before, and had experienced some anger during the visit as well. He understands, and tells me not to worry. It’s okay. Tomorrow will be a brand new day. I sigh, and start letting go. There’s nothing like a little empathy to make you feel better.

on the way back, I was all smilesAfter putting all our IKEA goodies in place, we decide to go watch “Dreamgirls” in our local theater. So we bundle up, and when we step outside, BAM! My anger is all gone. It’s snowing, big and puffy snowflakes falling slowly and easily on the ground. It’s snowing a good amount, and the sidewalks are already getting white. Snow has this peaceful quality to it.

For the first three or four times. But when you get a foot of snow in April, you get very angry.

Just kidding!


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Our Life in Brooklyn keeps you updated on what Brent and Teresa Lagerman are up to. Looking at most of the posts you’d think we didn’t spend much time in Brooklyn, we do love to travel, so we’ll take you along as we visit Stuart, Madrid, Syracuse, TX, Washington, and of course we’ll always end up back in Brooklyn.