There’s a link on our Neighborhood Council website entirely devoted to lost & found pets, just in case little Fluffy wanders off in search of Starkist Tuna instead his standard bowl of Fancy Feast, or if an owner’s tag-less mutt breaks off his leash and ends up dodging cars on a freeway onramp. It’s a very useful tool for reuniting loved ones.
Another lost & found tool was not particularly useful if you were lactose intolerant, so that’s probably why you no longer see ads for lost children on the back of milk cartons asking “Have you seen me?” I wonder how often someone six states away from the child’s disappearance noticed the photo and remarked over a bowl of Cap’n Crunch, “Hey… If you ignore the nose piercing, shaved head and the neck tattoo of the Virgin Mary, doesn’t that kid look like Crystal from reform school if she was 12 years younger?” (for all those of you who are offended, you inadvertently stumbled on a humor blog and you should return to your Google search and click on something that ends in “.org”).
Lately I’ve been noticing an uptick in the number of lost furnishings throughout my neighborhood. Sofas, chairs, desks, mattresses, bookshelves – even full living room sectionals can be found on street corners, in alleys, behind apartment buildings or hiding in empty lots. My heart goes out to them because they look so sad. I imagine their owners pouring through Pennysaver ads and stopping traffic abruptly when they see a sign posted on a phone pole. They’re hoping the handwritten scribble says, “Found: Brown Sofa. Springs exposed and missing one cushion.” But no… it’s always another damn lost cat.
Sometimes the furniture only appears to be a few years old, but more often than not, it is obviously well-loved and looks like it could have been in a family’s (or crazy cat lady’s) possession for decades or more. The owners must be distraught over the loss of their coffee table with their 4-year old’s carvings and sharpie illustrations of SpongeBob SquarePants. Or the sofa that appears to have been the actual birthplace of a litter of puppies. Or the mattress that contains so many memories of successful evenings initiated at the single’s bars. Such treasured furnishings are irreplaceable.
I’m not really sure how these important pieces of furniture magically transport themselves from an owner’s living room, office or bedroom into a weeded area behind a chain link fence, but I have a few theories:
1. Burglars were in the process of stealing these treasured furnishings, but didn’t secure them properly to their truck, van, wagon, or other method of transportation, and the sofa, et al. fell off and landed on the afore-mentioned street corner, alley, etc.
2. Aliens (as in ET – the Extra-Terrestrial, not as in swimming from Cuba or following coyotes through the desert “illegal aliens”) noticed these functional and comfortable human contraptions and decided they wanted them for themselves, but after beaming them to their spaceships they realized that since their bodies are far from human, the furnishings are not actually as functional and comfortable as they originally thought, so the furniture was abruptly tossed from the alien spaceship and landed in the new spot on earth.
3. Perhaps for easier moving while rearranging furniture, the owners attached wheels to the furniture, but during the recent minor earthquakes, the furniture rolled out of their homes and down the street, losing their wheels along the way.
5. Ditto #4, but instead of an angry roommate, it’s an unscrupulous criminal who has stolen the furniture and is demanding a ransom for its safe return.
These unfortunate furniture owners must be drowning in pools of their own tears. I feel for them, but I am even more concerned about the horrifying experience endured these young sofas, chairs and mattresses by being exposed to the cruel elements. Scorching sun, brutal wind, torrential rain, and attacks from lawn sprinklers and hoodlums can transform these innocent furnishings into tragic victims that may never completely recover from their ordeal. They may sit silent and ignored for weeks, months, possibly years (depending on the neighborhood and the efficacy of their Sanitation Departments), and in most cases, their worried owners may never be found.
Within this blog post, I am sharing the photos I have taken of some of the lost furniture I have found in my neighborhood over the past few weeks. If any of these treasured furnishings look familiar to you, please respond in the comments below.
In advance, I’d like to say: You are very welcome! I am so pleased to be able to reunite you with your old friend.