Saturday, December 27, 2008

Our $2000 Mattress

The Eastpointer

Our 2000 dollar mattress

By Richard E. Noble
Two years ago, after a lifetime of tossing and turning, my wife and I decided to buy a “real” mattress. We used Christmas as our excuse. This was no spur of the moment matter. This story is not a tale of impulse buying. This decision was thought about and analyzed for years - perhaps I should say decades.
Over the years we had slept on $250 mattresses from bargain stores; we had been given old mattresses by friends and relatives; we had even bought a mattress from the God-only-knows-where-it-came-from store.
But why not? Our whole life was K-mart sneakers, secondhand clothes and home constructed everything. Why now should we be buying a $2000 mattress? Were we crazy? Did we deserve a $2000 mattress?
Can a $2000 mattress really be 10 times as comfortable as a $250 mattress? What if we buy a $2000 mattress and it is no better than a $250 mattress?
You spend half your life in bed; don’t you deserve the best that you can afford? But what does “afford” mean? Because you have $2000 does that mean that you can just spend it - on a MATTRESS?
Two thousand dollars could also buy a vacation on a cruise ship. Two thousand dollars could be a fancy hot tub, a secondhand pickup truck, a vacation at a resort, a whole new living room set, a deluxe stereo system, five years worth of fast food burgers - two thousand dollars is a lot of money. My god, yes! Why our entire home only cost $8,886. But so what! We now drive a car that cost us more than our home. In fact it cost more than double the price of our home.
But we had to do it; we deserved it. We were getting old and we didn’t want to die never having slept on a “real” mattress. Buying a real mattress wasn’t like sailing around the world, or climbing the Matahorn. We had the money in our saving account. So why not just do it! Bite the bullet and get it over with.
We went shopping. We checked out everything on the Internet. We checked foam, springs, feathers, air, adjustable, hospital beds, everything. We made our choice. We wanted a Simmons Beautyrest. The one with the special super-duper extra cushion on the top and the forever-and-a-day guarantee. Of course we would try to get our $2000 mattress for the best price possible. We would shop until we dropped.
We laid on every Simmons Beautyrest showroom mattress in a 200 mile radius from our home. They all felt great. Yeah, but how would they feel five or ten years from now? What if we blow $2000 on a Simmons Beautyrest mattress and we then both get hit by a truck and die?
We finally bought our Simmons Beautyrest super-duper deluxe mattress from a small shop over in Panama City. We got it for the bargain price of just $1600 including delivery and set up. What a deal!
We have been sleeping on it now for two years. We’ve stayed in hotels and motels and none of them have been as comfortable as home sweet home. I even spent a couple of weeks in the hospital recently with their $10,000 electronically controlled fancy-dancey beds and when I got home, there was no comparison. Our Simmons Beautyrest was better - much better.
But now we have a new problem. This purchase was a once in a lifetime purchase for us. What happens if a hurricane hits Eastpoint and we have to evacuate? The mattress that fits easily into our $8,886 trailer home doesn’t fit into our $20,000 automobile. Figuring in depreciation our Simmons Beautyrest is the most valuable household item we now own. How can we just leave it behind? If this mattress blows away we will never be able to afford another one. It would be a shame to lose my record and CD collection, but I don’t spend half my life listening to music. I can take my computer hard drives with me. Nothing else that we own is worth a darn. But what about my Simmons Beautyrest?
I could strap it onto the roof of my car but it is usually raining before and during a hurricane. We tried to buy insurance on the contents of our trailer. But if they won’t insure our trailer why would they insure its contents? I checked. They wouldn’t.
Now I understand how the rich folk feel. They finally get enough money to buy the Hope diamond and now they can’t wear it because they might lose it or somebody might steal it. I read about this rich lady who had cheap duplicates of all her expensive jewelry made, so that she could at least pretend to wear it. I know exactly how she feels now. I’ll bet she has a Simmons Beautyrest and doesn’t know what she is going to do when the disaster hits her neighborhood either.

“The Eastpointer” is R.E. Noble latest publication. It is a series of selected columns from the Franklin Chronicle. It is available now at or from the author. Local bookstores or businesses who would like to sell The Eastpointer or other books written by R. E. Noble should contact the author for specials and discounts. Richard Noble is a freelance writer who has lived here in Eastpoint for nearly 30 years.