Excuse me! I'm getting screwed!

Unfortunately, I am not being screwed in the proper way, nor with the correct NUMBER of screws. And I am being screwed by cheap furniture.

Having moved last week, we’ve been doing a bit of furniture shopping - the list isn’t very long, but we’ve bought all ‘assembly required’ items. Why buy the ones that need to be assembled?

Okay, we’re fucking cheap. Shut up. We just bought a house.

The items we have purchased from three different stores (coughValue City FurniturecoughTargetcoughOffice MaxcoughLowe’scough):

A wooden ‘vintage collection’ hamper

A large free-standing ‘vintage collection’ cabinet and doors

A plastic storage cabinet for storing food items in the basement

A wrought-iron and glass dining room set - a glass topped table and six chairs - this was actually an expensive item, so you wouldn’t expect to have to put the fucking thing together, right?

A computer desk for my home office

A chair for my home office

As of tonight, I have put the first four items together. Yes, I am a girl. Yes, I have my own electric screwdriver, and they can take my electric screwdriver when they pry it from my cold, dead hands. My husband, while good at many other things, has no ability to use tools. So it’s up to me to put our items together.

Hamper. They’ve given me these things called ‘locking nuts’. They should just call them 'ass-dicking useless nuts that don’t do anything to hold your furniture together - [Nelson Muntz]ha-ha[/Nelson]. They say not to use excessive force to ‘lock’ them into place. Yeah. You go put those nuts up your ass. I finally got wise and used my electric screwdriver to lock the nuts. Ha!

Well, it’s not exactly in perfect condition, but at least I don’t fear that it will fall apart when we put a towel in it. I hope.

So the cabinet. It also has these locking nuts. I also use my electric screwdriver on those. I’ve also used the word ‘fuck’ about thirty times in the past five minutes. Luckily, my mother, who is staying with us for the week, is deaf in one ear. She hasn’t heard me screaming obscenities. Yet.

The cabinet is together and again, it hasn’t fallen apart yet. So that’s a plus. The hamper and the cabinet look quite lovely in our beautiful old bathroom with the pedestal sink. As long as no one slips and falls on them, or pushes them, or TOUCHES them, they’ll be fine.

The plastic cabinet. This was okay, except for the fact that the directions are COMPLETELY BACKWARDS from how the fucking thing goes together. We followed the directions completely right, and ended up with the wrong handles on the wrong door. But it looks right. And my husband and I managed to scream at each other without being heard by my mother. More obscenities. Lots of 'em.

Luckily, when we scream at one another like that, we forget about it two seconds later. We know that when we’re putting something together or we get lost, we’re going to scream at one another. Otherwise, we rarely argue. And we don’t hold grudges. So it’s rather cathartic to scream at one another every five months or so.

The cabinet is together and in the basement. Yay. Hopefully, the canned goods in it will not cause it to topple over.

Next - the dining room set. Luckily, we were able to pick that up on moving day while my dad and uncle were here - they picked it up and put most of it together for us. Score one for Dad. He left my husband in charge of putting the last three chairs together - which he’s done quite well - except for one. There’s one chair that refuses to go together properly. We’ve fought with it. We’ve screamed at it. We’ve threatened it. And it’s not working. (Oh, yeah - they also forgot to give us the screw sets for two chairs. We had to go pick those up again…).

Now the computer desk. It’s normally $70, but I picked it up on sale for $40. Since I’m now working from home, I need to be able to have a decent workstation, right? Peachy. We haul it home today and I get to work putting it together. For awhile, things go fine - this also has locking nuts, but they seem to work better than the ones for the hamper and cabinet did. Then I get to one piece of it, and start hunting around for another screw for the piece - what’s this? There aren’t enough screws! So I start counting. I’m missing two of one and one of another! SHIT!

So I call Office Max. Very politely, I say “I bought a desk there today, and I’m missing a few of the hardware pieces for it. Can I send my husband up to pick them up?”.

The teenager on the phone, who was very nice otherwise, started to say "I hate to ask you to do this, but could you - " - so I interrupted him and said “No. I am not taking this thing apart and hauling it back to the store. I’m sorry, but that’s not happening.”.

Luckily, he talked to a manager, my husband went up to get the items, and they gave him a whole 'nother package from another box so I was definitely not short anything else. Kudos to them for that.

Again, my husband and I yelled at each other a lot while putting it together. He asked me not to put the chair together tonight because he’s getting hoarse.

I’m not asking for perfect furniture. I’m not asking for pure cherry and excellent workmanship. I’m just asking for the shit NOT to fall apart at a touch and for EVERYTHING to be in the box so that we don’t have to go out YET AGAIN and pick the shit up. That’s all.

Next time, we’re buying expensive stuff and we’re hiring someone to put it together for us. I might hire someone to yell at my husband, too.


Damn. If you can survive this, your marriage will survive anything. It gets better, but the first couple of months in a new house are kinda rough.


Oh, hell, we’re actually having fun. I think we get angry with one another so rarely that this pseudo-anger is kind of fun for us. Right now, we’re watching Arrested Development and making evil jokes about my family members, so we’re in good shape :smiley: .

Of course, we still have to put the chair together tomorrow.


Spareus partus at the local store? Hee hee, and for good measure, hee. All anomalies of partitude are RTV (return to vendor), unless the person who answers the phone is smart enough and cares enough to go to the back and steal hardware from another RTV piece.

[Mr. T voice]I pity the fool who doesn’t have a shop full of fasteners![/voice] :wink:

Hey, if you can get your realtor father-in-law to help you put stuff together, you can BOTH yell at him and feel at least a little bit like you got some back from the Purgatory of buying the house through him. :smiley:

Well, the rant was okay but you should work on your counting. :stuck_out_tongue:

I know you know this, but “assembly required” furniture blows ass. I’ve had my computer desk (Wal-Mart <$100, assembly required) for quite some time though and the worst thing I can say about it is the fake finished wood grain sticker shit is coming off on the top shelves, but it’s near the back so you can’t even see it. Other than that, it’s in great shape. I hope your furniture holds out for a long time.

Oh, well, he was going to install the garbage disposal, but he wanted to do it next week. In the meantime, it smelled like someone had shoved a dead cat down the sink (no, mine are in the room with us, so we know it’s not them), so we absolutely had to get a disposal in there. He got upset that we’d bought one and gotten it installed. I told him we’d save the next one for him.

I’m avoiding him as much as possible, can you tell? I could’ve posted a rant about his pissiness regarding the day we chose to move, but I figured everyone was sick of hearing about him :smiley: .

Shit, man, I can’t even balance my checkbook! You expect me to remember how many stores I’ve been to??? :smack:

Actually, the desk we got from Office Max seems to be fairly decent - except for the part where I missed while screwing in some screws - but it’s holding together fine, so I’m not paying attention to the holes that I made. The chair is quite comfy for it’s lowered price (well, the one I sat in today was - we’ll see if it feels quite the same tomorrow after I’ve put it together. I actually LIKE the cheap shit. I think I’m just sick of putting it all together at this point!

And danceswithcats? I got a whole BAG of those suckers you can have now - want 'em?:smiley: I’m going to find other home improvement jobs to use them on. I wonder if I can screw a CD to the wall to make art.


Despite my being a big girl’s blouse, my dad did show me my way around some basic tools, and (once again, being a big girl’s blouse) I love IKEA so I frequently have occasion to put furniture together. (Not that this is necessarily new or Scandinavian, you realize – my antique spindle bedstead can also be taken apart and put together, which I find quite useful when moving.)

I find IKEA furniture quite easy to put together, and fairly easy to compensate for if something untoward happens, though there are occasional wrong numbers such as my having to screw in curtain rods with the screw set at such an angle that you cannot actually get a screwdriver in there if the bracket’s affixed to the wall. I think I finally managed to get it by tightening the screw by hand and snapping the rod in, rather than vice versa; we’ll see how that works.

Hmm. So you don’t have the McMaster-Carr catalog ready and waiting to provide you with top-end Holo-Chrome bolts and nuts when you’re going to build anything? I wouldn’t trust anything of value to Wal-Mart machine hardware.

They have electric butter knives now?
:confused: :smiley:

So, I’m putting together a big, heavy sideboard from IKEA (their Markor style, it’s very nice and solid). It has 9 separate drawer assemblies, 2 doors, and about 50 other pieces. I’m working my way through the instructions, after a good couple of hours of assembly, the wife wakes up and saunters in. There’s a pile of wooden parts on the floor, looks pretty solid, so she steps on it to go by me… SNAP! That was the sound of an entire panel being broken in half. :eek:

Didn’t yell… but she decided to take a little walk around the block, before coming back and helping me glue it together.

Catalog? Man, it’s 2005! McMaster-Carr.

You might be able to find that missing hardware at the House Of A Million Screws.

I have no connection with the company, but I’ve always loved their slogan.

Hell I saw right through the OP as soon as I read it.

You need help.

But is it good?

How you doin’.

Yeah right!

See I knew it wasn’t a screwdriver.

My offer still stands if you need help.

Ok maybe not.

Your just mean!

You don’t care where you do it do you.

Call it what you will.


Oh see, now THAT place ROCKS…

I am perusing with special interest the pumping, vibrating and flitering section…hoo boy, it’s gonna be a good weekend.

Elza B, just remember, anything said between spouses while either moving or on a small watercraft do not count.

You story reminds me of when I was charged with putting Fang’s crib together. I spread the pieces on the unfolded box to inventory them. (I think it’s better to find your missing a piese before you begin.) I matched up all the parts with the number in the inventory in the instructions. When I proceded to the actual assembly, I found that while the parts were sorted by numbers in the inventory, they were designated by letter in the instructions, and not so that part 1 = part a, either. To top it off, the instructions were in French. Fang’s crib was put together though. On the bright side, unless the next batch turns out to be twins, I don’t have to do this again.

I’m surprised I’m the first one to say this - watch out for splinters!


Most Ready for Assembly furniture comes with a detailed part list. Before you screw one screw in, you should take the five minutes or so to confirm that you have all the pieces. I learned this the hard way.

By “locking nuts” do you mean Cam locks? THey’re very simple to use, and after you’ve assembled enough cheap ass furniture, you know not to force them…


Yep. The ones in the desk I put together worked perfectly - no problem whatsoever.

The ones in the cabinet and hamper for the bathroom? I followed the directions perfectly - didn’t force them - they still turned around and fell out. I finally just said fuck it, turned them with the screwdriver, and it’s a lot better. Three days and they haven’t fallen apart. That’s a good thing. I think the holes that they had created for them in the furniture were too big - which is why they kept turning back and falling out.

Got my chair put together last night - no problems! Yay! Now I realized I still have an unassembled sewing cabinet to put together - SHIT! That’s what happens when you have great friends who give you a bridal shower gift that they KNOW you’ll want - you’ll get stuck assembling it :D.

GawnFishin, I showed my husband this thread, and after he finished laughing hysterically at your response, he told me to tell you this: “Don’t flirt with my wife.”.

Then he reread the part where I said to shove the nuts up your ass, and he told me to tell you this: “Never mind. Do you want her?”.

Oh, yeah. He loves me.