Test Drives

When you buy a car, you always take it for a test drive. In fact, you might take a few cars for a test drive. Wouldn't it be nice if you could do that with other items you are debating purchasing?

We need a new couch because the fabric is wearing thin and ripping, but I am hesitant to buy one because I am not sure what I want. My first "want" was for the color to be black. Black couches have pluses and minuses and I didn't want to invest in buying one if I would end up not liking it. Instead, I purchased a black slip cover for our current couch. The couch is structurally in good shape other than the fabric, so it is still comfortable to sit on. I am "test driving" the color black.

Black, I decided, is a good color for a couch in that room. However, the slip cover is soft and plush, so EVERYTHING shows up on it. Therefore, if I do decide to purchase a black couch, I will need to look for a fabric that doesn't pick up and show so much lint. That was a nice thing to learn through my test drive.

Many of my friends are purchasing anniversary bands to wear on their right hand. These are usually very expensive, consisting of a substantial row of diamonds. Did I really want to spend the money on one? Living a simple, minimalist lifestyle would immediately say "No", but I didn't want to feel deprived either. So I bought a cheap one at Kohl's for a test drive. It looks very real, and no one would know it was fake. I have worn it for two or three months now and it gives me absolutely no satisfaction or feeling of joy. I honestly don't care if it is on my finger or not. Most of that is probably due to the fact that it is fake, and there is no sentiment behind it. However, how much sentiment would I really feel for an anniversary band? (By the way, five years ago we reset my wedding ring for our 20th anniversary, and I feel immense joy wearing that. So maybe it is the sentiment.)

Clothing is another item I test drive. I am very careful to leave the tags on, try things on in my home with no pet hair around, and make sure I don't damage the item so it can be resold again. I would never wear an item and return it. The reason I test drive is because usually, I need time to make up my mind, or I order online and order a couple of different styles and sizes to see what fits best.

What else would I love to test drive? Appliances! We have had little luck with new appliances. Chairs - it is hard to tell in the store if the chair would really be comfortable for a few hours of relaxing. One cell phone carrier lets you test drive their service to make sure it works in your home. I like that idea. What do you test drive or wish you could?