Ode to a Couch

A couch is a beauteous thing. It can be the perfect backdrop to a movie-star’s derriere in a slick LA photo shoot or an enabler to the TV-addicted couch potato. But one thing it simply cannot be, is without personality.

Whether strategically placed in an office reception hall, the director’s top-floor office or in the basement car park in favour of the all-night security guard, a couch must carry an air of character, a discerning something that speaks of a past, experience and a special something that sets it apart. And it should always, always call you into its either heavy or sophisticatedly sleek arms to elegantly pose, simply collapse or somewhat-slowly get horizontal.

We all grew up on the couch, so to speak. Some of us still might be growing as adults now on the therapist’s couch. We have all spent time eating, surfing, sleeping and making out on a couch at some stage of our lives and I bet you can remember every single couch that was with you in those meaningful moments don’t you?

From the family couch on which numerous children and pets have been enfolded and raised to the proverbial business boardroom casting couch of the star-glamoured and most often balding echelons of the movers and film shakers, the couch is always billed as the lead star. And so it should be too in the corporate office that means business. 

A clean, stylish sofa can speak volumes to first-timers through your doors. When choosing such an iconic piece of office furniture you need to be aware that your couch will define the very mission statement of your company, it will tell visitors of your frame of mind, your business perspective, what is important in your life. No, the couch is not a mere piece of office furniture – it represents the very image that you and your business are. So what is your symbol of success, what emblem of you does your office sofa carry?

A breakroom sofa should also be made available for the mere office mortals who slave night and day to reach deadlines. Everyone needs some downtime, a place to park that says: “Do not disturb me… I am thinking/dreaming/sleeping/meditating/sulking/ignoring you.”

This type of couch should definitely be less rigid, its seats more sagging and giving of comfort. It should be able to double up as a bed in the most extreme cases of work overloading. Why, even a US Congressman Pete Hoekstra, a Republican from Michigan, slept on his Washington office sofa every night and then appeared in his pajamas to advertise his credentials as a budget-conscious politician. With a deficit-reduction a major issue, he decided to highlight the fact that for 18 years he had saved his constituents money by not renting a flat in the US capital.

In such cases, the couch should take hold of your body, it should spoon you, invite you for a quick nap or just to take a load off and shoot the breeze until it’s time to put one’s nose back to the grindstone again. Some couches even outlive themselves, they are so comfortable and familiar they are worth a refurbishment. Some so iconic of a past era that they are modernised and resold to the super-trendy of the fashion elite. 

Whatever couch you choose, let it always be expression of who you are… 

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