Natural Law number 398

WE are changing the bed.

We’ve had this one a long time and though we like to cuddle each other in bed (yes… things are that good!), we like to have a choice about it.

In our present bed that’s impossible. Everything rolls into the middle. Bodies slap together like jelly magnets and stay that way until you claw your way out in the morning.

So… the bed must go.

Except that I can’t find the allen key that undoes the bolts. It’s one of life’s Natural Laws. The people who make beds, and especially the allen keys that come with them, add an ingredient that causes the allen keys to self-destruct three days after the bed has been erected.

If they have a sense of humour they chuck another spoonful in so they dissolve 30 seconds before the last bolt is in place.

It’s done on purpose. There is no good reason for making something that needs allen keys except malice. Who keeps allen keys? Especially for a bed, which might not be disassembled for years.

People have allen keys by accident. They usually dig them up when they’re gardening; rusty and corroded and in a size that no one wants.

How hard would it be to make some kind of fixing on the bed itself to which you clip the allen key so it’s right where you want it 10 years from now.

Better still – what’s wrong with ordinary nuts and bolts? Most real people have spanners. But I guess the truth is that although spanners in a multitude of sizes –they’re all wrong.

There must be people in the world who have proper sets of spanners in their own special cases, with every size known to the human race for threads that are metric, imperial, whitworth and Hindi, but I don’t know any and I don’t want to. They’d be frightening people to invite to dinner.

And anyway, what’s the point in having spanners if there’s no liaison with the manufacturers of nuts and bolts, so every nut you need to loosen or tighten is too small or too big for every any spanner you possess?

I suppose the fact that you can actually go and buy spanners and keep them in your workshop is a step up from allen keys, which are like leprechauns – capricious little buggers that vanish the moment you take your eyes off them.

And you only ever stumble on them by accident, down drains or in the vegie patch; or if you’re lucky they fall out of the flat-packed bed bits and hang around long enough for you to put it together (but never long enough to take it apart).

We can place men on the moon (or we could once) but we can’t resolve a design problem that has dogged the human race since it discovered there were better things to sleep on than straw.

What about nuts you can do up with your fingers? Big nuts, mind you, that you can do up really tight. There are some circumstances, even at my advanced years, when you don’t want the bed rattling every time you move, and especially not rhythmically.

So… we haven’t changed the bed yet, but we will, because I do own a hacksaw and a grinder, and I can always hire a chainsaw and an oxyacetylene torch.