IKEA is a store that gradually replaces everything you own.

It’s tied to the process of girlfriends and wives steadily throwing out your stuff. They’re not wrong, most of what you own as a guy in his 20s is garbage. But the steady clearing of a house never ends.

At a minimum the house will be de-cluttered by moving everything into a garage or shed. Anywhere away from the house. This is where the “man-cave” comes from, a place for all of your nonsense.

A house full of objects and stuff is something to be assailed. Hence our seasonal pilgrimages to the Swedish furniture factory.

There’s a running joke that IKEA is the ultimate relationship test. By the time you’re stalled looking at an infinite variety of plastic containers during a quest for a new couch, things start to become unhinged.

My relationship is going the distance as we’ve been to IKEA at least 12 times. Broken up – zero times. Our trip there this week was a hilarious reveal of the argument trip wires. Context: We were joking around and laughing as I realised this would be a Brag Dad article.

Stepping through the doors, our first thought was relief for the air conditioning.

We went to IKEA for glass cups and plates for an event. That had been the mission. So as we walked in, I was interested in setting some objectives, a shopping list if you will. Obtain these items and we can leave the maze and return home. That way we can speed our way through sections that have nothing to do with our plan.

“This isn’t a place for plans”

I almost fell over laughing. This is the heart of the IKEA argument. While we drive there with specific goods in mind, upon entry it’s a budget-expanding search for unknown items that will revolutionise our lives. Most of them are tupperware and storage solutions.

Right while laughing about IKEA not being “a place for plans”, I Want To Break Free by Queen started playing over the store’s PA. Sometimes life is perfect.


How to avoid an argument at IKEA?

Know the trip wires before you get in there and say something stupid.

You came for specific items but understand what you’re in for. You’re now shopping for the ‘unknown unknowns’, the things you didn’t know you need.

This will take some time. Be cool and listen to some classic hits.