February 27, 2010

No Snakes in the Mattress

I wrote the following post on January 2, which I am updating today:

Husband and I went shopping for a new mattress today. . I learned that I am completely Poor White Trash because I cannot even conceive of spending FOUR THOUSAND DOLLARS on a friggin’ memory foam mattress. I don’t think I could ever sleep on it, knowing that it cost that much -- when we have a kid in college.

So we bought a generic rip-off memory foam mattress with matching memory foam pillows. I’m terrified it was made in China and full of snakes (get these mutha f’ing snakes outta my mutha f’ing mattress.) The salesman said it was made in Denver.

This will be the fourth bed of our married lives. It’s hard to say good-bye to such a part of one’s daily life. Of course it’s a king-sized bed, not like the very first double bed in which we spooned and cuddled. Now we both snore like freight trains and have one usually two cats between us. (Will the cats make a depression in the memory foam?)

The last mattress we bought was 18 years ago. I still like it, but it was time for it to go. I once sold a prescription drug for allergies, and learned in training that mattresses weigh much more going out the door than in. Dust mites burrow into the mattress and over the years, the dead mites make it heavier. Is that not the most disgusting thing you’ve ever heard? (I've since told several people this, and they've all said to me a version of "Well, my mattress is completely covered with a giant Baggie, polyurethane, Saran Wrap" or something like that which just made me feel inadequate about my larger-than-life outgoing mattress.

The bed before the one we’re replacing was a water bed, never liked that much, especially when I was pregnant. Getting in and out of that bed resembled when the White Star Line launched the Titanic at Southampton. Getting out of bed while very pregnant was like rolling past the White Cliffs of Dover in one of those giant luxury liners.

February 27th update on buying the new mattress:

That was two months ago. Thankfully, the new mattress did not contain any snakes. But from the moment it was in our bedroom, it had a life of its own.

It stunk. To high heaven.

It smelled like teenage boy's feet, cigars, and mildew. The mattress came with a "kit" so that we could stain proof and deodorize it before sleeping.

After buying this mattress, I went online and discovered that a memory foam mattress is probably not the best choice for people with asthma and allergies.

The mattress salesman told us, when we called him, that memory foam mattresses often have a distinct odor when new. He made us feel really stupid, as if "everyone knows this."
(No S##T Sherlock.)

Because they (the mattress, not the salesman) are petroleum based, memory foam mattresses are subject to something called "off-gassing." Now I am quite familiar with the concept of "off-gassing" as I have a husband, father, brother, son, and seven nephews. This is apparently something different, and I didn't like it just the same.

The mattress salesman convinced us to give it some more time and suggested we air out the room. This was difficult to do in January when we had five winter storms in a row, but we were patient.

Finally we could not stand it any longer and we went back to the mattress store to talk to them in person. The mattress salesman wanted to send someone out to inspect the smell. That's a new one for me: "Hello, I'm the Mattress Inspector here to make sure you didn't cut off that little tag sewn on the mattress eighteen years ago."

We said no. Get this thing out of our house.

While we were there, we decided to buy a new platform bed. Most new mattresses are eighteen inches thick now. We felt like the maiden in "The Princess and the Pea," having to climb aboard our own bed each evening. We found a platform bed and a new eighteen inch mattress, a more traditional kind.

Stuff happened. Time passed. My husband's mother passed away, and one of our cats died. We had difficulty getting on the delivery schedule, it needed to be a Saturday. We couldn't miss any more work.

Finally today the new bed and new mattress was delivered. The delivery men ripped the plastic off the mattress and I buried my face into it to sniff out an odor ogres. No off-gassing. No bad smell. No apparent mutha-f'ing snakes in the mutha-f'ing mattress.

Then the delivery men set the mattress up on the new bed. This mattress sat about twelve inches higher than the one in the store. We specifically told the salesman we were buying a new bed because we thought the mattress was too high.

The delivery man told me, "Oh, he should have told you to get the low-profile box springs." Gee, I couldda had a V-8! Back to the drawing board. Monday I will have to call the salesman back and unless we want to continue making a running start before taking that giant leap into our bed each night. We want the low-profile box springs. I am getting way too old for these hi-jinks. (Only someone over 50 would use the word "hi-jinks.") Quoth the raven.