My office chair
This is an article about a lifetime spent sitting. It is meant as a reflection on life in modern times, for many individuals in Occidental societies, at least. The office chair is the element that says it all: it is where you do it, where you sit.
When did this become normality? How long ago? I can’t remember of a world in which people used to stand most of their time, it feels normal to be seated (or even lying down) as the default position. Standing or moving (walking, running, hiking, cycling) are actions, therefore, performed when you need to do something, go somewhere. If you don’t do, if you don’t need to go, you sit. Or lie. So many of us complain about their bodies, without even noticing that is not normal that we don’t have well developed muscles all over our body. We do have muscles for a reason, if they are not developed then something must have gone wrong. Why is an athletic body reserved to professional athletes only?
The office chair is the seat. The seat millions of people use every day, eight hours a day, for forty long years of their lives. It is an extremely comfortable piece of furniture – in case you have never sat on a good quality office chair, you may want to try it, paradise compared a common chair. It is so comfortable that too often we forget that we should stand up, every now and then, to go for a walk, to make blood circulate better in our veins and arteries. It is terribly sad to have reached a point in the development of societies where the norm sees men sitting most of time. I wish there were more outings, more nature-involving activities, more freedom to roam.
In is also interesting how a good number of people aim at an office job when they study. Not many will choose farming as a career, for example. But, isn’t being able to farm a more useful skill than being able to deal with paperwork or something similar, done in an office? When did we lose our connection with Earth and what is real? – real, as in “connected to the real world, outside there”.
The office chair is just a symbol, in this case. I have nothing against the office chair. I actually have a great one, which I love. I can literally sit on it the whole day and I have no problems at all: my back is perfectly fine, so are my neck and my shoulders. But as a symbol, the office chair is the proof that we need something so good to sit on, because we do have to sit most of our awake time. And this saddens me. I would like with this article to have you all reflect on our lifestyles because I think we need to reconnect with our natural selves.