IKEA's growth in the U.S. happened to coincide with my buying-stuff adolescence. I was on my own for the first time and, for reasons best explored with a therapist, determined to do everything myself. The delivery of a patented IKEA fltbx packed with almost-wood panels, cryptic assembly instructions and inch-long Allen wrenches gave me a palpable buzz. Two days and nine hours later, when I completed putting together whatever awesomely nonsensically named item I was putting together, I felt complete. IKEA product assembly bolstered my sense of self. My 20s were not a proud decade.