Couch! Catastrophe! - THE CATASTROPHIZER
 
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Question: what's a couch between friends? Answer: them's fighting words. Also, I'm not Amy. 
Dear Amy: 
A furniture dispute is turning an old friendship upside-down.

During a frenzied 500-mile move for a job, I agreed to lend a sofa to a friend and her roommates.I was moving to temporary housing, and they worked for a political campaign making very little pay. The couch would allow them extra sleeping space for campaign workers stopping through, and would save me some storage costs. I expected them to take good care of it.

Now that I am moving into a permanent apartment with space for the sofa, I discovered that the household cat has destroyed the couch.

Quotes to repair the sofa came back well above the total cost I paid for it new, so the only option is to replace the couch. This specific couch was purchased as part of a set.

I requested that the roommate pay me full price to replace the couch, but she is objecting, saying that she could buy a couch for half the cost on Craigslist. She is only willing to pay for half of the value of the sofa. She doesn't seem to understand that it is part of a set and was in, at worst, "like new" condition.

I don't see how I should have to pay for her irresponsible pet ownership when I was doing them a favor to begin with!

I don't want to ruin my relationship with my friend over a petty matter. Or am I being petty?Can't I get my couch replaced?


1) Your primary concern should be that you just wrote a novella about a dispute over a couch. Now, I am no fan of brevity, but a good catastrophizer should always attempt to anticipate the negative judgements of those around him or her, and those around you think you used too many words on a couch.

2) Your first mistake: lending anyone anything. This is always foolhardy. If a cat doesn't regularly attack it, someone will vomit on it (probably an overstimulated political staffer); if someone does not vomit on it, someone will probably urinate on it (probably an overstimulated political staffer). Trust nobody. Also, never, ever borrow anything. You never know when you might vomit, urinate, or acquire a cat.

3) Always make sure that the compensating you do for your insecurities is subtle. On the one hand, you are obviously smug about the fact that you purchased a furniture set and that you were in a position to lend this to your furniture-impoverished friend. On the other hand, you make it clear that the only reason she is furniture-poor is that she is donating her time to a cause. You're proud you have a job and that you have friends in the fast-paced world of campaign work. You feel superior because your friend was forced to turn to you for a couch. But you're obviously wracked with anxieties because your friend has a more exciting life than you do and all you have to show for your life is a furniture set. Or am I reading too much into this? I tend to do that when I'm feeling inadequate. I have, you see, no matching furniture set. 

4. Your friend is a bitch. She should obviously pay for a new couch. This raises a major concern: why was she your friend in the first place? Because her failing really reveals a bigger failure in you.


Send the Catastrophizer your requests for advice and/or rationalizations using the form conveniently provided HERE. I will publish my responses on the THE CATASTROPHIZER page.


POLITE DISCLAIMER: This site is intended for entertainment purposes only. If you are not entertained, fair enough.





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