Every so often, each year or year and a half, I do something stupid that flips a disk and puts my sciatic nerve into overdrive.

It's never very much... could be reaching to get my coat from the closet. Could be getting out of the car. I'm never sure what's going to set it off, but when my back goes... so do I.

So last March I spent an entire six weeks unable to sit in any position. My world consisted of lying on my stomach (I am not a tummy sleeper!) or standing. I tried to carry on my work, but had to boil it down to the bare necessities and let the little stuff slide.

I attended meetings standing up. I dined out standing up. I taught my business groups standing up. I participated in the Molson Fund decision standing up. My feet were sore.

Toward the end of the month, I needed to catch up on my accounting data entry. I set myself up in the family room, laptop on the floor with two remote phones (business and personal) and the TV remote as well as my 'to enter' file and 'to file' file. It was going to be a long night. I didn't want to have to get up.

I laid down on the coffee table and hung my arms over the end to reach my keyboard. It's amazing what you can do if you're creative.

Data entry is monotonous and so I hit the TV remote just to give myself some mindless background stuff to listen to.

Instead, I got Tony Little. Body builder and long time back sufferer (apparently), Tony was demonstrating his chair for bad backs.

Oh, c'mon, I thought, clicking to another channel. Found myself clicking back. Hmmm... you can completely take the stress off your back by inverting the chair so your feet are well above your head.

I clicked away. I can hardly tell the commercials from the shows anymore... they both seem to be about the same length. So I watched the beginning of a show about shampoo... or maybe it was a commercial... and clicked back.

".... and you can use the remote control to activate full heat to the whole body, or heat to just one part of your body, as indicated on the body part chart on the remote control..."

I clicked away.

A feature about the mysteries of language development arrested me momentarily. Then I clicked back again.

"... total massage, administered from your remote control, to any selected area of the body..."

This is ridiculous, I thought. Who would buy something like this over the airwaves? I can see donating money to a disaster relief over the phone. I can understand responding to a show asking for feedback. But buying something! I don't think so!

I clicked back.

"... chair has been designed to accommodate laptop use, should you want to enjoy the comfort of pressureless chair use, remote heat and massage, along with work..."

Give it!

At that point, my sweetie came in (husband #1, I call him) and paused, dumbfounded, I think, to see me watching the Shopping Channel.

"... pleather in soft black, washable da, da, da... woodgrain handles, da, da, da..." Will it fit in with any of our antique furniture, I wondered.

He did what most husbands do... have you ever noticed how a husband carries a purse? Like it's the tail of an oversized rat that's been dead for weeks! Held out at the end of a straight arm, handle between two fingers, nose in the air, he handed me my purse.

'I think you're going to be needing this, by the looks of things," he said. He launched into the history of the Shopping Channel, and its unheralded success as a retail giant.
"I'll need tech support to do this, " I answered.
It took about 2 minutes.
"And how will that be delivered?" I asked.
"By Canada Post Express," came the answer.
Then it dawned on me... this thing will need assembly.

Pleased to say the following:
It arrived, as promised.
It cost much, much less than one would expect.
It does everything Tony Little says it will do.
I love it.
The kids assembled it as a Mother's Day present.

As a devoted purchaser to Barrie retailers, I don't expect to shop through Rogers any time soon, but it's just funny how things go.

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