The chair again, and a question

I admit it: I’m kind of achy. This chair has so many different ways to tweak it that I’ve spent all day fiddling and changing things, and I haven’t figured out an optimal way to sit in it. Part of this is my desk’s fault; the front of my desk is lipped in such a way that getting my legs underneath my desk while still reaching my keyboard comfortably isn’t exactly impossible, but requires some precise settings from my chair. At any rate, I’m not worried that I’m going to turn on it or anything– I just need to figure out how I want everything set and I’ll be fine.

That said: look at that image. The chair can actually recline back farther than that; I don’t think that guy is at full recline.

Is there anyone out there who thinks they could do that in a desk chair without freaking the fuck out? Because one of my major peeves with desk chairs (and even recliners, sometimes) is Sudden Unexpected Rocking. I react very poorly to unexpectedly feeling like I’m going to fall(*), and leaning backwards that far in a desk chair– or, truly, even close to that far– is simply not possible for me. My wife tried it last night and got maybe to 110 degrees before she decided she’d had enough. But you see these people in the videos about these chairs just leaning all the way back without a care in the world, and I want to have whatever magical ability they have that’s allowing them to do that. Because I seriously can’t.

(*) I have said many times before that I’m not afraid of heights, but I’m afraid of falling. People react like this is contradictory, and it’s not. I don’t care how high off the ground I am so long as my feet are planted securely, but I can and have very recently had serious panic moments from a brief involuntary shift in my center of gravity while sitting in a chair. I have never had a problem in an actual rocking chair, though, something I sit in all the time, and if you can give me some insight into why a desk chair or a recliner might trigger my lizard brain and a rocker doesn’t, I’d genuinely love to hear it.

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Luther M. Siler

Teacher, writer of words, and local curmudgeon. Enthusiastically profane. Occasionally hostile.

2 thoughts on “The chair again, and a question

  1. Maybe because our brains know that rockers are supposed to rock – we know they’re designed that way … but a chair has four legs that all touch the floor at the same time (generically speaking) and don’t move, so our brains react accordingly when they get the message that not all of those four legs are where they’re supposed to be … and, us persons of a non-supermodel litheness have different centers of gravity than that stick-figure in the picture so reclining office chairs can be fraught when we sense we’ve reclined past what our life experience tells us is the tipping point/point of no return.


  2. I like how you put it–Sudden Unexpected Rocking…which really unnerved me with the said “Sudden Unexpected Rocking” occurred while I was sitting in my own desk chair and was the fault (pun intended?) of EARTHQUAKES–five in one day! And so now I’m walking around practically tiptoes as if that’s going to stop the floor, and my thousand pounds of books, from falling on top of the people that live downstairs while they binge-watch Netflix.


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