The personal website of Philip Thomas


The Living Room Couch

If ever there were a place where dreams were born, where creative vision was restored, and where too much coffee was consumed, it would be on the living room couch. Even as I type this, I'm sitting here on the couch. And it was here on the couch, in a moment of solace and gratitude, that I had the idea to even type out my thoughts on this beloved piece of furniture. It was one of those mornings where the rain (which after awhile turned to sleet and then snow) was falling so hard, you could hear it above the soft jazz music emitting from the our little black box we like to call a stereo. It's funny to note that the music is actually playing through my phone via a small cable. The couch is some feet away, definitely far enough away that I can't reach my phone to change music, to answer phone calls, to check emails, etc. And I don't mind that at all. Because when I'm on the couch, feet propped up on the matching ottoman, I don't worry about my phone or my emails or anything at all, really because in these rare moments of stillness, my world with it's varying lists of projects and lists doesn't exist at all. 

Many a dream and plan has been hatched on this couch. I remember one evening planning a spontaneous trip to the beach. Two hours later, we were packed and on the road. I've read countless books and newspaper articles on this couch. And it was on this couch that I drank various cups of coffee that originated from hot boiling water, to your standard coffee maker and most recently, to a French Press complete accompanied by frothed milk from a separate device. I sit on this couch and read, or write, or type, or sip and stare. I've laughed on this couch. I've cried and I've fought with my wife on this couch. I've fallen asleep on this couch, too. It's the only place in the house I can fall asleep just as easy or easier than in my own bed. 

This couch has a long history. It was a wedding gift from my mother and father. It's an ultra-modern looking sectional with two end pieces, two middle pieces, and an ottoman. It's made of a nice beige microfiber cloth that is super easy to clean. That little feature has come in very handy, because in the 10 years we've been owned it, we've found ourselves on the couch with messy foods such as spaghetti with meatballs, chicken tortilla soup, homemade macaroni and cheese, pizza, and many other stain-giving foods. The beige color is nice too, because it's neutral enough that the couch can exist no matter what we decide to do to our little living room. 

The couch isn't perfect. There are some stains on it. Truth be told, the dog has violated the couch on more than one occasion. During the day, we cover the couch with various musical instruments other misc. random objects in order to keep him from getting on the couch. And most of the time, that works great. But in the early morning, while the coffee is brewing and the milk is frothing, I come into the living room, remove all the musical instruments and obstacles, and settle into my tried and true spot on our couch and for a few magical minutes (or on the weekend, hours), I leave my world, recharge my tired and weary self, and dream about the future.