Saturday 2nd February 2013
I have bought a new swivel chair for my office. How could I resist it it's high-backed (though I have to say having got it I am disappointed - the back only goes up to my shoulders). A new chair is all that I need to make me buckle down to work. Obviously. Though to be fair the old one was pretty uncomfortable and squeaked quite a lot and moths had eaten big holes in the material, so we'll see.
I had chosen a chair that people said was easy to construct. I am useless at building furniture or doing anything of a DIY nature and manage to fuck up every single thing I make - WITHOUT EXCEPTION. Something will go on back to front or I'll break something as I try to hammer in a screw or whatever. I am terrible.
So I was determined to get this right, especially as the instructions kept telling me there was a danger of injury if I used the chair if anything was missing or if the screws weren't tight enough.
I unpacked the box. My office is still a mess. I have spent hours tidying it up but it's still a bit of a bomb site. I couldn't place everything right in front of me, but as I took out the few items I placed them nearby. I then very carefully followed the instructions (which seemed pretty clear) - checking that everything was the right way round. It took me a while and there were a couple of trickier bits but soon I had the base of the chair done and the top of the chair done and all I needed to do was to connect them and put on the arm rests. I decided to do the arm rests last and put the chair together. I sat on it. It all worked. I was feeling pretty good and pretty manly.
I went to pick up the arm rests from where I'd put them and discovered another piece of the chair that I'd not spotted which wasn't on the instructions. It was the little expanding tube that goes over the metal rod that connects the base to the chair. Three little cones that concertina together and I guess protect something or facilitate the raising and lowering function or possibly hold the whole chair together and prevent the spinning knives escaping from the seat and slicing off your genitals.
I had done so well and this was so disappointing, frustrating and emasculating. I had fucked up putting together a chair that everyone else in the world agreed was the easiest chair to put together in the world.
I tried to take the chair apart so that I could put the cones in their rightful place. But it was not coming apart. Something had clicked into something else and however much I pulled and twisted it wasn't going to fall apart (which is probably a good thing most of the time as you want a chair to stay in one piece). My guess is that it won't really make any difference and that these cones fulfill a largely cosmetic function and it's doubtful that once I've set the chair level I will want to alter it. But I was just so despondent that I had once again failed. Just after I felt so good at having achieved something manual. Hubris thy name is Herring. Being rubbish at DIY and manliness thy name is Richard Keith.
And that warning about not using the chair if anything is missing will be gnawing at my brain every time I sit down to work from now on. So I will never sit down to work.
If any proper men (I am using men in the sense of human there, so women are included - I am less manly than most women and I accept that) know how to resolve this situation, or whether the loss of my plastic cones will impact on the longevity of the chair then please let me know. As it is I now have a fun toy telescope to put on my desk. I can use it to stare out the window. It won't actually make anything appear closer but it's still fun to pretend. Yeah most of you satisfied customers only got a chair. I got a telescope too, so who's the loser now?
Don't answer that.
Haven't you heard of a rhetorical question?
Oh that wasn't rhetorical. Really, I am interested have you heard of a rhetorical question?
Why don't you answer me?
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