London Life

Ikea Hell

Writers all over the world have re-visited the existential hell of visiting Ikea stores at the weekend. It’s a bit of an easy target, like train delays and moaning about the weather.

I won’t intentionally retread old ground with this post, but do want to share the fact that an upcoming house-move meant I spent several hours there yesterday. Let’s just re-examine that: Ikea on a Saturday afternoon.

And for me, writing this down represents a form of therapy.

So consider this my checklist of Ikea tropes encountered yesterday:

  • Screaming, unattended toddlers, wailing like someone was removing their finger-nails
  • People pushing other people out of the way with their over-sized trolleys
  • Children doing their very best to run into me at crotch-level
  • Couples arguing loudly and viciously over which couch to buy
  • People lying side by side on various beds, sharing a little too much about their night-time habits
  • Biblical queues for the restaurant and its food at 1960’s prices
  • Parking-rage outside in the rain
  • Unthinking dicks blocking disabled parking spaces
  • People realising their car is too small for the furniture they’ve just bought
  • People bulk-buying candles like they were about to be banned

If you’ve ever set foot inside an Ikea, you’ve probably encountered all these and more. I’m convinced more than ever some people use Ikea as cheap childcare. They wander off to the restaurant for cheap fish and chips, leaving their children to knock seven shades of shit out of other customers and every pice of Ikea merchandise they can get their sticky little paws on.

I won’t be rushing back in a hurry. But a return at some stage is inevitable.

3 comments on “Ikea Hell

  1. The sentence, “People bulk-buying candles like they were about to be banned,” nearly made me choke on my coffee. Perfect!


  2. Ikea Tours is just not quite the same as UK ones.. Firstly it’s closed on Sundays… this is France remember. The layout is identical to Ikea Lakeside but of course everything is in French. But I’m a fluent Ikea speaker so that’s ok. They don’t seem to get quite as crowded as UK ones. Although I don’t think we have been on a Saturday. The funniest YT video about Ikea is this one:


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