(BTW — this isn’t a picture of the chair I’m talking about. I’m sure this chair is perfectly fine. It’s only being used for stock photo purposes. Please do not send any hate mail to this chair.) Photo by Dillon Mangum on Unsplash

I Might Be Dying and It’s This Chair’s Fault

not literally dying, but an equivalent level of pain, emotionally speaking

Sarah Lofgren
4 min readSep 8, 2022


I got the smart idea to buy a new office chair, because my old chair was roughly 800 years old and made my butt feel like a bowling ball bouncing across a brick floor. When one has an uncomfortable chair, one tends to do most of one’s writing in other places, like the bed, the floor, the oven, and the astral plane.

Eventually I accepted that, for the sake of my butt and my writing, I should probably buy a new chair.

That was my first mistake.

My second mistake was researching chairs. If it were 10 years ago, I would have marched into an office supply store, grabbed the first box I saw, purchased it, said something embarrassing to the sales clerk, brought it home, assembled it, and been perfectly happy. (Actually, I probably would have gone to the thrift store and bought whatever didn’t smell like farts and finger-paint, but the previous sentence makes me sound fancier.) At no point in the chair-buying process would “research” have been involved.

Now literally every purchase involves research. I hate it. I’m so tired. But, if you don’t research your chairs, you’ll end up with the two star chair that’s secretly doll-sized, made of cheese, and looks nothing like the picture on the website.

Comfort was important, but I also had to weigh ease of assembly, longevity, and style. At first I allowed the style to overwhelm the other characteristics. I imagined myself sitting in a badass leather chair six feet off the ground, with classy buttons and a cigar in my mouth as I typed the Next Adequate American Novel.

Then my hip seized and I remembered what I was supposed to be prioritizing.

After a investing a reasonable amount of time into research (one year), I made my third mistake. I bought a chair.

I dragged the box into my apartment, cut it open, and laid out all the parts. I looked at the instructions. I had some thoughts.