Sunday, October 15, 2006

recycling that futon

Now I'll finally know if the cheap-ass futon I bought on 23rd Street 12 yrs+ ago has a foam core like the salesguy said! That poor, flat lump of cotton has been lugged across three (four?) state lines and sentenced to death by a 100 sippies filled with milk. But it is still actually in pretty ok shape -- thank you not-so-cheap-ass futon cover! It is much like the picture to the right -- no, wait, it is exactly like the picture to the right.
So, anyway, I've been thinking about the futon's demise and what form it should take--and I gotta make it quick because we're going to have a cookout soon and people will be tripping over it, in its current unused state in the middle of our living room, hog-tied with twine. We've all seen the proverbial dead futon, lying by the trashcans, getting rained on for a fortnight or two, waiting for the trashman to throw it in the dump. I just can't bring myself to do it -- it's just a big hunk of reusable cotton batting, right?
You will not believe how little there is to Google about recycling futons, except in the sense of donating your flat-ass, old mattress to a homeless shelter. But, I did run across a curious article on Asahi.com (which I'm thinking is a website to help Japanese people with their English) that talks about how, since WWII, Japanese people have been throwing out their futons when, traditionally, they sent them to futon refurbishers. Lately, there have been efforts on the part of futon shop owners to re-introduce the kids to the concept of working to keep the futon through fluffing it up or mending it rather than tossing it in the trash heap where, says the article, "More than half a million are chucked every year in Tokyo alone." In addition to giving workshops on the benefits of refurbishing your futon, there have also been public events to recycle futon stuffing for making things like cushions. Fascinating!
You can be darn sure that, until the economic holocaust, American futon dealers will not be having no workshops on how to refurbish your flat ol' mattress. I think I'll make some throw pillows. Really, really big throw pillows.

And, now, your moment of Haiku.

Update: After fretting about the futon in the middle of our living room and realizing there wasn't a chance in heck that I was going to get around to making anything out of it, the old man carted it off to Goodwill where it was gladly accepted. It really wasn't that stained and still had some life to it, I guess. It's good to know that some thrift stores will take old futons.
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