Deborah Ross: I'm sorry, there really is no alternative to Billy bookshelves

If you ask me

Share

If you ask me, news that Ikea has overtaken John Lewis as the nation's favourite store means it is time this newspaper joined all the others in printing a tranche of Ikea facts and figures, as follows:

FIVE HUNDRED AND TWENTY TWO MILLION people visited Ikea last year, and not one approached a store without an excess of existential dread in their heart, soul, and very bones.

ONE IN TEN children are, apparently, conceived in an Ikea bed which is absolutely fine until a couple of years later when, alas, they start to warp, nothing on them closes properly, and bits drop off.

NINETY EIGHT PER CENT of shoppers who veer from the approved Ikea in-store path thinking they can shortcut to the exit are still missing after 48 hours. (If you must veer from the approved path, make sure you have a torch, warm clothes, and a Thermos.)

The other TWO PER CENT find themselves back where they started, and will tell you: "Thinking there is a shortcut to the exit is for fools."

The average store visit always takes SEVENTEEN HOURS longer than anticipated and can end in the desire to: 1) put a gun in your mouth; 2) ram raid the storefront; 3) gouge out your own eyes with one of those little pencils; 4) purchase 800 tea lights for £1.

TWO BILLION meatballs are sold annually in Ikea stores to a secret recipe that may or may not consist of coating MDF with a meaty veneer.

ONE HUNDRED PER CENT of people who construct a bathroom cabinet upside down do not have the will to dismantle and start again, so live with it alongside the Post-It Note that says: "Open From Top!"

FEW people know the Allen key was invented by William G Allen in 1910, because he was a bugger.

Although MANY assume the smirking little stick man who appears all over the instructions is not real, he actually lives in Neasden with his stick lady wife whom he looks at disapprovingly and marks with a big cross whenever she does anything wrong. ("It is most tiring," she says. "I wish he'd pack it in".)

FORTY ONE MILLION Billy Bookcase units have been sold to date, which just goes to show our favourite interiors style may be best described as "Pitiful Sheep".

The big yellow bag is NOT the must-have bag of the season, Vogue has said.

ONE HUNDRED PER CENT of people who conceived a child on an Ikea bed now wish they hadn't. Indeed, as one mother told us: "I love my daughter, so it's heart-breaking to sit by and watch her warp and not close properly as bits drop off".

And she then added: "Frankly, I wish I'd gone to John Lewis and paid the extra."

d.ross@independent.co.uk

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Project Manager - Birmingham - up to £40,000 - 12 month FTC

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Project Manager - Birmingham - ...

SThree: Recruitment Consultant - IT

£25000 - £30000 per annum + Uncapped Commission: SThree: Sthree are looking fo...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Dublin (based in London)

£20000 - £25000 per annum + commission: SThree: Real Staffing's Pharmaceutical...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Question time: Russell Brand interviewing Ed Miliband on his YouTube show  

Russell Brand's Labour endorsement is a stunning piece of hypocrisy

Lee Williams
IDF soldiers and vehicles in an image provided by campaign group Breaking the Silence  

'Any person you see – shoot to kill': The IDF doctrine which causes the death of innocent Palestinians

Ron Zaidel
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before