Life (and Living Room) Re-arranging

Jennifer Zurko

For the first time in the many years we’ve been together, my husband Doug is not bowling at all. No leagues, no tournaments.

The reason why this is a big deal is because Doug has been a semi-pro bowler for over 20 years and comes from a family of bowlers, including his uncle, Carmen Salvino, who was a professional bowler for seven decades. (Google him or go to YouTube to watch him bowl.)

I say “semi-pro” because he’s not a professional that bowls for a living, but he participates in two year-round leagues and multiple tournaments during the year, including the U.S. Bowling Congress Open Championships. So he doesn’t bowl for fun—this is competitive and the goal is to win money. Doug typically has a 210 average; when I bowl, my goal is to hit 100. I clearly don’t share my husband’s bowling talent.

He’s surprisingly accepting of not bowling this year. With his job still on shaky ground, it turned out to be the best decision. Yes, his teams consistently finish in first place, which means they win most of the money. But it also costs money up front in order to get there—and there’s no guarantee you’re making that back.

So we decided with the money that usually goes to league fees and tournament entries we’d finally get some stuff done around the house that had been neglected. One of those was a brand new couch for our front room (or “frunchroom” as we Chicagoans pronounce it; you probably call it a living room). We’d been dragging our feet on getting new furniture because our cat likes to use it to sharpen his claws (see my column from the February 2019 GrowerTalks), but we just couldn’t sit on that old, sunken, uncomfortable couch anymore.

This time, we wanted something different. Doug had been campaigning for a sectional and I’d resisted because our house is pretty small and I didn’t think we had the room. But then I thought, “Why not?” We did what everybody does—looked on the store’s website to find a few we liked, went to the showroom to see them in person, then bought one praying that it’ll fit.

I realized that I could have used a Lean Flow expert to help me re-arrange the furniture we still had in the front room to make room for the new sectional. I wish I had someone like FlowVision’s Gary Cortés, who, for over 17 years, has been going into greenhouses and seed departments to help them improve their layouts to be more efficient and productive. Since this is The Greenhouse Efficiency Issue, we thought it would be a good idea to check in with Gary and a few of his clients to see what they’ve done to certain areas of their businesses to increase their productivity. (Some estimated double-digit upticks in efficiency.)

Maybe I should have planned a little bit better before I bought that new couch—it certainly would have saved me on stress and self-doubt. Like GrowSpan’s Janine Coppola advises in her article about expanding your greenhouse.

Being more efficient doesn’t just mean in your processes, but in your energy consumption, too. And Low-Mass boilers are a newer technology that may be what you need to help curb your energy costs.  

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the sectional looks lovely. And fits … kind of. It does take most of the room and we’ve had to forgo the old coffee table so that we can actually walk around it, but it does increase our sitting space and is so much more comfortable than the old one. And so far, the cat’s mistrust of the large, new piece of furniture has kept him from using it as a scratching post. Hopefully, it stays that way. GT