Imagine if you will, that you are waiting for your evening train in "any town" Sweden. Suddenly in a “That’s Incredible” moment you burst into flames. In the 1980’s John Davidson along with Cathy Lee Crosby devoted at least 2 episodes with stories about spontaneous human combustion.  I never believed a word until I read this news item last week on the internet.


Witnesses outside the Gothenberg station watched as a gentleman suddenly became a human candle until a man with a working brain ran up and threw his coat over him to put out the flames. He was then taken to the hospital and police are still trying to piece together what happened. Someone said his mumbled words sounded like the word Ikea. Could this possibly be? Was he so angry at the beloved  "one move furniture” store that he burst into flames?


I have a love hate relationship with Ikea and can sit for hours and fondle their huge catalog. Yet when I enter the store I have to walk miles through areas I have no interest in. But as I stroll casually through each department admiring this and that, I purchase yet another box of tea lights for my home.



I must argue with the person who wrote that anyone that cannot assemble something from Ikea should go back to kindergarten. When no text is used in assembly instructions this should be the first warning that the bed you just bought that morning is not going to be slept in that night. I am sure whoever else is assembling the same product in another part of the world like Thailand is having the same dilemma. Exactly what is that little illustrated Swedish man pointing at?  A word of warning to remember is that your completed furniture is only as good as the “chosen one” who puts it together.

You might remember the episode of "The Big Bang Theory" where the cast was assembling Penny’s Swedish made bed. Even the rocket scientists could not find the location of the holes nor could they figure out the difference between the top and the bottom. I believe they said the directions were like an impressionist painting. What you initially see - even with help from that free Allen wrench is not what it actually ends up looking like. Is time and insanity worth the cheaper price?


Ikea sells over 14,000 products online, of which 9,209 items are now being resold on Craigslist. Half are dresser drawers that are missing knobs that have long fallen off and been lost. Most have mislaid the instructions so you know your end result will look like something conjured up by Ikea hackers.



Yet when a new store opens a special freeway ramp must be built to handle the huge hipster traffic. They come to host dinner parties at the store featuring Ikea’s word famous meatballs with a side of Lingonberry jam. Then it’s off to the living room displays to play Pictionary while pretending to watch Ikea Heights on a faux television.


Ikea also started making homes in Europe in 1996 called “BoKlok”. It was a move to allow first-time home buyers to have a chance at a cheaper place to live. As I type out these words I am still wondering what happened to the poor man burning man in Sweden.

Did he catch on fire because an impending divorce was looming?

Did he find out minutes before that his soon to be ex wife was not taking their Ikea house? 

Did she tell him that he was not getting custody of both of the Allen Wrenchs? After all having one Allen Key with Ikea products is like a man only having one testicle. You need two to get the job done right.

Now how about that exploding iPhone? Who can we blame that one on?




Linda Seccaspina 2011

Images from Google and Dornob

Actual Ikea Heights you can watch on youtube. Shot in an actual Ikea store



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Comment by Kevin Army on December 1, 2011 at 1:59pm

John Davidson!

Comment by Anne Watson-Russell on December 1, 2011 at 1:56pm

They used to have a bouncy ball room where kids could get lost burrowing through hundreds of coloured balls under someone else's supervision -- I would go to the Cafeteria and read with a cup of tea while my bouncy bouncy son burrowed away for the free hour -- it was heaven. I will always have fond memories of IKEA, my sanity saviour.

Comment by Linda Seccaspina on December 1, 2011 at 12:41pm

Maybe they think we are mice Steve::)

Comment by Steve S on December 1, 2011 at 12:36pm

Ever wonder why the traffic flow design so closely resembles an old stockyard?

I did the West Sacramento IKEA once. My DMIL needed a bookshelf. Had no trouble with assembly, but the 75 lb box was a challenge. I bought a couple of jars of pickled herring and onions. They were very good and pretty cheap.


I guess it was OK because I needed to get something, but I cannot understand why anyone would run the maze for jollies.

Comment by Linda Seccaspina on December 1, 2011 at 12:16pm

OMG Anne.. those last sentences killed me hahaha

Comment by Anne Watson-Russell on December 1, 2011 at 12:06pm

One of your funniest blogs. The furniture pics were taken at my daughter's pink-painted ghetto barbie house in Toronto when she and her girlfriends first moved there for college. 

Read somewhere a while ago that there was a connection between self-immolation and being inwardly soaked in alcohol... but don't wish to start any rumours about this poor unfortunate human torch.

Lighting a votive for him.

Comment by Linda Seccaspina on December 1, 2011 at 11:41am

Christine.. I knew someone also bought candles hahaha

Creekend.. there you go.. make a GPS for Ikea and you shall make a small fortune

Werner.. I can see the traffic jams already hahaha.. I so agree

Comment by Werner on December 1, 2011 at 11:26am

When we lived in Ajax, we went once to the one in North York (I think that's where it is), just off the 401. Never again, I'm not the biggest fan of stores for the sake of wandering around and I'm usually in and out within a few minutes, I felt like a freaking lab rat.

Last Monday we were at a restaurant when during the conversation with the waitress, Ikea came up, (they are opening a store in Winnipeg) she mentioned hat she could hardly wait for it to open, the waitress became somewhat concerned when she saw the somewhat shocked look on my face, then I mentioned that I'm a woodworker and I'm not particularly crazy about Ikea, we had a good chuckle, but it would be a cold day in hell (considering we live in Winnipeg) before I walk into that store, when it finally opens, I'd rather stay in my basement shop and make custom sawdust.

Comment by Christine Geery on December 1, 2011 at 11:09am

OMG, I almost peed my pants reading this because it is so close to home. One day we were wandering around trying to get out and Daniel said, "I feel like we're in the movie, Ground Hog Day!"  The sad part is that I love their candles as they don't drip and I must make a trip there soon for more. Just the thought gives me hives.

Comment by Linda Seccaspina on December 1, 2011 at 10:32am

Yes Steve .. someone else put it together..:)

Zanelle.. perhaps the honeymoon phase turns into the divorce stage after they put it together..:)


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