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Friday, August 26, 2011

An open letter to Ikea


Dear Ikea

No, not you Sales, Customer Service, weird grocery and food items area, or various departments of furnishings etcetera.

I'm talking to you, Ikea Foodhall peeps.

I. Love. You.

I love your meatballs with chips.  I even love that weird jam you serve with them.  I love that you never call me out on ordering a cheapie kids meal size for myself, even when I don't have any kids with me.

I love that you have kiddy crockery and cutlery, all plastic and in abundant supply for when my kids drop it / stick it up their nose / throw it across the room like a projectile missile.

I love that you have plastic cups for free water.  I really love that you turn a blind eye to my cheap self then using the free water cup to fill up on soft drinks.  It's not that I'm desperate for Lemonade and too cheap to pay for it.  It's actually just that I seriously love using the soft drink machine.  Really.  If you ever want to go full silver service and employ someone to fill the drinks - I am your girl.

I love your cakes.  I loves your bottomless coffee.

I love your kiddy play area, complete with movies and kiddy sized tables and chairs.

I love your microwave for heating any food I may or may not have bought in with me.  Yeah I know that's not the intended use, but you let me do it anyway, bless you.

I really love your free disposable bibs.  Which I may or may not have worn myself the last time I attempted your pasta neopolitana while wearing a white top.  But it's okay, because it was a kids serve and I sat at the mini kids table.  With ONE of my kids and SIX others that I did not even know - which made it a little awkward when trying to make polite dinner conversation, as I had no idea what my companions were into, and it certainly wasn't the weather, politics, the state of the economy, or global warming (which is probably for the best, as I know bugger all about any of these things).

So now that I've done the right thing and built you up with all that love and praise....let me tear you down...

Here's what I'm not so enamoured with :

Having to PAY for a TEASPOON of cream to go with my cake.  If you were offering up a decent portion, then perhaps 50 cents would be acceptable.  To be honest, I didn't even bother checking what you were charging me for 2 x one teaspoon portions of cream, and I'm sure it wasn't much.  But still.  It used to be free.  And it used to be a much more generous serving when it was free.

Actually that's all.

I was all ready to launch into a ranty tanty soap box moment, but I've got nothing else to say about your foodhall.

I will end it with a bit more loving :

I love your $3.95 kids meal bags, because they are quite healthy, and the kids love them.  When I was there today, I stocked up and bought NINE of them, so that I can be my usual lazy self and not have to bother with their lunches for the next 3 days.  And I'm not even kidding.  I swear to Vodka, I did. 

Totally worth the puzzled and horrified looks of other shoppers, as I pushed my trolley full of lunch bags and only 2 kids around your entire bloody shop, trying to find the bloody exit for over 20 bloody minutes.  I got a little bit dizzy, a lot disorientated.  At one point, I was going against the flow of the arrows taped on the ground.  I figured, what the hell - I'm already copping strange stares for my collection of kids lunch bags, I may as well go against the arrows too.

And yes, it was a little bit of a thrill to rebel against the conformity-inducing arrows.

But it didn't get me any closer to the exit.

Anyway, Ikea, I just wanted to let you know that I visited you for one single item (and also a trip to your Foodhall).

I did not get it.

I did, however, get two packs of textas for the twin tornado.  They already have squillions, but what's another 24 among friends, right?

I did, however, get a miniature plastic drinkware set for the kids.  They already have squillions, but what's another set of 8 among friends, right?

I did, however, get a TV cabinet dirt cheap.  I wasn't looking for or in need of one.

I did, however, get two sets of funky kitchen storage tins.  I wasn't looking for or in need of any.

I did, however, get a great bathmat, toilet brush and holder, toothbrush holder (and therefore the *mandatory* matching cup and soap dish), and hand towels for the bathroom.  I wasn't looking for or in need of any of this.

I did, however, get another odd wine glass to add to my set of unmatching wine glasses.  I wasn't looking for or in need of one.

Anyway, beloved Ikea, I just wanted to let you know that it may be a while before I visit again.

#1 Hubby is a bit peeved at my purchases.  He can sense credit card usage a mile away.  It is his own personal sixth sense.  He just happened to 'drop by home' in the middle of the workday, and caught me lugging the new TV cabinet inside.

I had been planning on just sliding it into place, and hoping he wouldn't notice. It's white and tall, our old one was black and low....I may've been a bit optimistic to hope for this switch to go unnoticed.

Anyway he was ok with it when I showed him what a bargain it was - and I do mean showed him - because he demanded to see the receipt since he is so used to me claiming every single thing I buy is on special / heavily discounted.

And he was happy to see I was actually speaking the truth on this occasion.  Until the receipt kept unfolding, and unfolding, and unfolding.  Kind of like one of those 'ye olde worlde' scrolls being unfurled.  He walked over to the crazy cheap new cabinet that was a BARGAIN....and opened all the drawers and found everything else I'd bought, hidden inside.

So, it will be a while before I'm allowed to come visit again.

I know, I know, as if I'd ever let #1 Hubby tell me where I could go to shop or eat.  AS IF!

But I'm going to let him think he's had a win this time.  Because I noted on your free kiddy-play area, that you don't take kids under 3 years of age.  I find this to be outrageously ageist of you!  Think of all the 2+2/3 yr olds who you are excluding!

Coincidentally, the twin tornado happen to be 2+2/3yrs of age, and I would be more than happy to visit again, if I could  uncerimoniously dump  drop them off for a lovely 90 minute play while I enjoyed my $1.95 unlimited coffee refills in peace.

Failing this change in your ageist age policy, I will see you in 1/3 of a year.  Save me 2 places in the play area please.

Signing off,
PP





21 comments:

  1. haha, love your Bargain TV Cabinet. My hubby never believes me either when I say I got it on special!

    I just thank my lucky stars that my closest Ikea is 6 hrs away. But when we are in the neighbourhood we always visit. Which sadly means that Hubby is almost always with me.

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  2. My 3 year old has just big enough to go into Smaland at child care - for the first time in 8 years I am now completely child free at IKEA, aahhhhh the serenity!  However I do find that IKEA causes more arguments between me and hubby than any other store in the world!

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  3. You ARE the Ikea marketing dept's dream. All that impulse buying, I love it!!

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  4. That's exactly the same as our trips to Ikea! Love it so much. It's my seond home. In adelaide you couldn't go into the play room once you turned 8, but now we are in melbourne and it is 10! Yay!

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  5. I have a love/hate relationship with IKEA.  Love the meatballs, hate navigating the place.  Your post cracks me up.  Very well written :)

    (visiting from Glow's FYBF)

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  6. haha love it! i havent ventured to Ikea as yet.. 

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  7. I loved resading this! You echoed my thoughts and feelings exactly :) Ikea and I have a love hate relationship. But my husband is just a hater! Great post x

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  8. I seriously love IKEA too! My first IKEA experience was actually at the northernmost IKEA store in the world. Yep, it's in the far north of Sweden, in a town on the Finnish border. It has a bus terminal right outside and apparently there is a regular bus run from a town in Russia that is about 5 hours away just so the people in that town can go to IKEA. It also gets a lot of business from Finland (obviously).

    Anyway, I think what I love about IKEA the most is those meatballs, but I get the large serve (cause I'm a pig) with the mashed potato. Thunder Maker loves IKEA too. It's probably a good thing that we live 3 hours from our nearest IKEA store. We tend to find an excuse to go and have lunch there whenever we are in Melbourne though.

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  9. Not sure if I could cope living so far from Ikea.  Really.  It'd have to feature in our list of requirements when we move house - proximity to an Ikea

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  10. Thanks!  #1 Hubby isn't a fan either, mostly because he fears the credit card damage!

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  11. Thank you. The navigation gets me every time too.  I have a poor sense of direction at the best of times, let alone in their maze

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  12. A reason for me to move to Melbourne when my oldest hits the 8yrs age limit here in Perth

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  13. I feel that I should be given free cream for my patronage

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  14. The twins eye the ball pit every time we go past, and I have to tell them to wait until January...then I'm visiting at least once a week to leave them in the ball pit

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  15. It's probably my own fault for claiming to have never ever paid full price for anything that isn't a grocery item.  6hrs away...you poor thing.  Maybe you should move? Seriously. I would!

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  16. Did you know..I've NEVER been to IKEA? And had no idea about this food business? I thought it was like the bunnings of furniture stores?

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  17. Oh. So. True. I hate having to tell my not-even-2-year-old (2 months off) that he can't go play with ALL THOSE BALLS!! in their giant ball pit. Another 14 months and some toilet-training and you can, dear boy.

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  18. I was only at ikea last night, but I've always steered away from the food hall.  maybe I should check it out.

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  19. We heart Ikea and always start our trip with a visit to the food hall for meatballs!

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