I’ve been neglecting this blog a bit since the weather has finally turned nice and I’ve been really busy with work, the garden and home renovations. But I haven’t stopped my weekly challenges (I just took a hiatus from writing about them!). An inside day awaiting a tropical storm has given me the opportunity to get caught up.
Back in May we inherited a new-to-us lazy boy recliner from my in-laws. In my husband’s laws of the universe, this meant the old one had to go. I posted it on Kijiji for a month, with no takers.
It really was still a good chair. The reclining mechanism was still functional, and it was super comfy. The leather was still in really good shape too, except for the arm rests where it was quite worn, and both my daughter and cat had exacerbated the situation. Then my husband in his infinite wisdom decided to cover the worn bits with duck tape. Even so, I didn’t have the heart to put a perfectly good piece of furniture on the curb on garbage day, despite the rantings of my spaceophobe husband.
So I posted the brown leather beast on the electronic bulletin board at work, and started calling around to several different charities. No takers at work, and I was told by the charities that if it had any worn bits they didn’t want it. I was promptly informed that their clientele has “higher standards”. Hmmm. I asked a few more questions, and learned that items are actually sold in thrift stores and not given directly to needy families. Point taken.
I was getting so frustrated I called the city to find out if any materials from furniture are recycled after pick up. They said no. In fact, I think the dispatcher even chuckled at me under his breath.
Finally, as a last ditch effort, I remembered I still had an account with Freecycle. I posted the ad before leaving for work one morning, and by that evening – success! It was picked up by someone looking for a gaming chair for their basement.
While I am thankful I was able to help someone repurpose the chair, it did get me thinking about why there isn’t a furniture recycling program for items that can’t be donated. For all the work put into diverting waste from overflowing landfills, there must be ways the wood, metals and textiles in furniture could be recycled. For example, could the wood be chopped up and used for biomass energy? Could the textiles be chopped and turned into rugs? Or, in our case, why can’t the leather be repaired? Well, I’m in the process of sending out some e-mails to find out exactly that. When (if) I hear back I’ll post the responses here.
Or at the very least I’ll let you know how nuts everyone thinks I am!