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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Today At The Department Store ...

I recently re-watched "Brokeback Mountain" and it got me thinking ... sleeping on the ground sucks! (Had you wondering where I was going with that, didn't I?!)

I've only been camping a few times and I've always been luck enough to have a pretty descent sleeping bag. It's very heavily padded ... nice and roomy ... and is rated to -40 degrees, so I'm ready for the Mt. Everest climb whenever I'm asked.

Anyway, where I live there is a decent department store chain that always has a major mattress and bedding sale around memorial day. I'm bummed because I wasn't really ready ... both mentally and financially ... to think about it this year, but more and more I'm realizing my inability to get a good night sleep is because I have a crappy mattress.

I've also been through some "relocations" recently, and I know I have a least one busted support in my box spring. I've had the mattress set for about six years and it's served me well. But I'm noticing that it has a very "lived on" appearance and it just isn't comfortable and supportive like in its younger years. It also has a small tear in it ... I'd like to say it was from some freaky hook-up, but I think it's from the "animal toe" I have on my left foot.

So now it's decision time, but before I set foot in a store, I'm going to do some digital detective work. Because of my age, occupation, and "station" in life ... I'm ruling out bunk beds (no support), water beds (I get seasick), futons (I'm a college graduate, so no), a race car bed (I think I could make it work but I'd get tired of always explaining it to others), a Craft-Matic Adjustable Bed (I'm under the age of 80), and just adding those layers of blue "egg-crate" foam to bolster up my current mattress (cheap, but would just need replaced constantly). I don't know if you can still buy feather beds, but my one grandmother had one and, although super fluffy, it offered no support whatsoever.

So I'm probably looking at either a traditional mattress-and-box-springs set-up or a memory foam alternative.

Most mattresses contain a core made of an assemblage of springs and an upholstered outer layer. Depending of type of support desired, manufacturer specs, and price point, the types of springs and the combinations of quilted fabrics and foams used to create a mattress can vary greatly.

There are five common types of springs used in mattresses, with the most common being bonnel coils adapted from the buggies of the 19th century, marshall coils ... individually wrapped for greater support, and continuous coils ... which employ a "hinging" effect for greater spinal and overall comfort. A mattress is usually paired with a "foundation" piece such as a box spring ... a wrapped sturdy wooden structure containing additional supporting coils, simple softwood slat foundation for enhanced stability, or a grid foundation that combines steel and wood for greater strength.

Foam mattresses are a newer type of innovation. These items utilize shape-conforming latex and/or viscoelastic "memory" foam to cradle the human foam and provide minimum transfer of motion. You've probably all seen the TV commercial where the cute blond jumps up and down on a bed with a glass of red wine balanced just a few feet away. Her jumping does not jiggle the wine ... although, thankfully, she still jiggles ... and not a drop is spilled. Thanks, memory foam!!

And I guess I forgot about all those adjustable air mattress beds where you can adjust the firmness of the mattress to individual tastes. Some models supposedly have really sophisticated baffles and air chambers so that the "number" you select for comfort really works for you.

But looking online for mattress details also uncovered price data ... andI went into sleepy-time sticker shock. Mattresses ... whatever type ... are pretty expensive. And some places still charge a hefty fee for local delivery. I guess my mattress isn't THAT bad ... maybe I'll wait for the 2011 models to roll out.

I wonder if Obama has considered a bedding bailout!!

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