For the last couple weeks I have been so busy with Vancouver Fashion Week and making sure everything was on track for the next issue of Vancouver Fashion eZine, I feel like I've lost my sense of fun. Today's article is just a chance to explore a little irony. I woke up with everything king-size on my mind - now, now, get your mind out of the gutter :) - so king-size it is.
It seems our society doesn't feel they get value for buck unless it's bigger and better. This might be restaurant food or just a lowly pack of socks. If you want an example of food you only have to watch the Food Network's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives with Guy Fieri. Almost everything is twice what any normal person should eat in one sitting. Costco is another example of excess. Even with a family of five, we often can't consume the amount necessary to justify the purchase of some of the items - it's just too much. At least half would be thrown away. And the term "Super-Size It" has become a cultural phenomenon. So what exactly brought king-size to mind as I woke up this morning - again, get your mind out of the gutter? It's the king-size bed. There is a story attached to this over-the-top behemoth and how it made its way into our life as well as an attempt at irony. But first, I think you need to read a blog I wrote in March called The Master Bedroom is the New Living Room - http://www.oliobymarilyn.com/2011/03/master-bedroom-is-new-living-room.html. It's the pre-quel for these thoughts. That done? Then it's time for part two.
My husband is 6'5" and has always bought into the idea of a king-size bed. I NEVER wanted one. We have an older home where the bedroom is not overly large, but I also feel it's an unnecessary waste. So the battle of the sexes flowed back and forth. When we first married, we did have a smaller bed to accommodate our apartment. Then we inherited a waterbed from his mother that was Queen-size, so no argument there. Eventually the waterbed needed replacement and here is where fate came down firmly on my husband's side. I had a friend who was selling off furniture in preparation for a move and she had a King-size bed in her guest room to get rid of with brass headboard and sheets. She offered it to us for only $200 if we came and picked it up. How could we refuse such a great deal? This time I knew the battle was lost, so I caved and the monster entered our home.
It has probably been 5 or 6 years now and I still stand by my decision that this bed is a waste of space and money. Oh, there are probably a few of you sprawlers out there who wander around the bed at night, but I suspect most of us sleep pretty simply. Glen goes to bed promptly at 10 p.m. every night and I wander in sometime after midnight. Unless it is blazing hot outside - something that doesn't happen much in Vancouver - we sleep either curled up together or with our bodies touching. Despite his height, my husband is not a BIG man, so doesn't really need a lot of room. That said, my assumption was that when he finally had a larger bed he would use the space to stretch out his long limbs - to really sprawl in a way he hadn't been able to before. Nope, he sleeps like he's in a twin bed, hugging the edge. What a waste!
So the ritual of the King-size bed is now firmly entrenched in our lives. I come in the room, sit on the edge, lay down and then wiggle backward across the great expanse until I find his warm body to curl up with. He then spoons his warm body around me. AAAHHH, the best part of the day for me! I am usually either in the middle of the bed or slightly on his side by the time I reach my final resting place, and here I stay for the night. While we change positions often as we sleep, we never wander far from each other. For those into math that means we only use half of the bed. And for that, we lose a great deal of space in our bedroom and pay a lot more for linens. I have tried to ask him many times why he hugs the edge of the bed when he so desperately wanted a large one, but he has never been able to give me a good answer.
Okay - if you both sleep this way, perhaps a BIG bed is a good idea!
I still think this is a conspiracy. You have the home builders who keep convincing us we don't really need a comfortable living room/dining room area to entertain in but absolutely need a giant master bedroom and bath. Honestly - do you spend more time awake in your bedroom than in other areas of your house? Then you have the furniture companies convincing us we need a bed so enormous that couples can hardly find each other. I assume most couples sleep together because they want to, not because they have to. At least that's the case for me. So it follows that they want to be able to sleep close together. Who needs a midnight safari hunt to locate your partner? Lastly, you have those who create the linens, duvets and quilts. I think this must be the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow as King-size items seems to cost more than twice as much as Queen-size.
In the end it always comes down to personal choice, but when couples don't agree it can be a problem. After taking grief over the last several years for his sleeping habits, I think my husband has become more open to taking one step down to a Queen-size when we purchase our next bed. The way he sleeps in one place all night, I guarantee you he won't notice the difference.
'I got a king-sized bed. I don't know any kings, but if one came over, I guess he'd be comfortable.' - Comedian Mitch Hedberg: