The Bed Is The New Couch

‘Bed potatoes’ is the hot new lifestyle trend.

Author by John Devore
Credit: Megan Schaller

My mattress is my couch. I am a bed potato. This is my truth.

I relax in my bed like a fancy little king. I pile pillows behind me when I want to sit up. I remove those pillows when I want to recline. I am thinking about getting a futuristic adjustable frame so I can enjoy multiple positions of repose.

But I am not lazy. No, no. I find myself having to write that short sentence often. I am just a believer in recreational convalescence. In fact, today, I wrote a power point presentation that was emotionally exhausting. My fingers cramped! Which is why I couldn’t wait to get home and fall backwards into my bed, like a mighty tree who lost a fight with a chainsaw.

There was a time in my life when I would crash out on my couch after a long day at work. But that time is past, mostly because I bought a very comfortable foam rectangle. You can do this, too.

All the things I use to do on my couch I can do on my bed. Now I live my life according to a philosophy based on a juvenile game I used to play with the hackneyed advice found inside fortune cookies. I watch TV on my laptop… in bed. I eat non-messy, non-crumbly snacks… in bed. I read books, or listen to podcasts, or meditate… in bed.

I sometimes call friends on the phone while I’m sprawled out in bed, too. Yes, you can do this with your phone. It’s a feature. Calling friends on my phone and talking to them with my actual human voice and listening to them respond with my ears in real time is my new thing. I call it “mouth texting.”

My couch is a nice couch. It’s second hand but in really good shape. I have had a long, fruitful, relationship with that couch.  I don’t want to hurt its feelings. It sits in my living room across from an ancient flat-screen TV that I barely use because I watch my shows on a computer. I don’t do much “living” in my “living room.” It’s just an extra room now where I store large possessions of mine. I, mean, I’m happy that I have a furnished living room because it’s a really fine line between “fashionably minimalist” and “could be a serial killer.”

I suppose my couch is best used when I have guests over. My dog also enjoys perching herself on the back of the couch. I will often dump freshly laundered clothes on the couch before folding them. So it’s not like my couch is useless.

There are two types of furniture: decorative and functional. For instance, I had an Aunt whose entire house was filled with expensive furniture that I was expressly forbidden from sitting on or using in any way. It would be a cliché to suggest she lived in a cold sterile museum. She loved her antique loveseats and chaise lounges and I distinctly remember that she was always whispering as if she didn’t want to wake the house. I think, late at night, all of her furniture came to life: vintage ottoman’s galloping up the stairs and crystal chandelier’s singing songs. The other type of furniture is the kind of furniture you live your life on.

And I live on, and in, my bed. It is common knowledge that humans spend about one-third of their life asleep and, presumably, that time slumbering is spent in bed. I am okay that over one-third of my life happens on a bouncy, yet firm, sleep biscuit.

I randomly watched a documentary in bed about the “tiny house” phenomenon—people who choose to live simply in small living paces—when I realized that New York apartments are tiny houses. The main difference, I think, is that “tiny house” advocates live in uncluttered spaces less than 400 square feet for personal or environmental reasons and I live in a tiny apartment because New York City is expensive and I need to live here because I need to live somewhere I can buy pizza by the slice at 3AM. My point is: all you really need is a nice mattress.

I am not getting rid of my couch. I still have friends, and a significant other, who enjoy sitting with me on it and drinking tea. And, you never know, maybe I’ll return to my old friend, Couchy, when I invariably write a wannabe lifestyle trend article titled “The Couch Is The New Bed.”

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About Woolly

A curious exploration of comfort, wellness, and modern life — emotionally supported by Casper. It’s a beautiful magazine published by a mattress. Come on, you know it’s not the weirdest thing to happen this year. The first issue includes a love letter to comfort pants, a skeptic's guide to crystals, and an adulting coloring book.