“Just the Reds” by Luke Wiget

I jog in place when I wait at red lights but don’t generally run the stretches in between.

It’s my wife who says I need the exercise.

The other day she told me that sitting is the new smoking.

That makes my leather executive chair no better than a Camel cigarette and I take issue with that.

There are eight ways to adjust the executive chair I’ve got. Once you lock in your settings, taking into account height and posture and the kind of work you’ll be doing, there is nothing like it. Basically you are floating in leather rather than sitting in it.

Only running at the reds is my take on running the straight-aways and walking the curves at the track. Even that amount of exertion gets me sweating enough to pass when I get back home. I need that ring of sweat around the neck. And it doesn’t take much.

You can always tell someone is serious or thinks he is when he’s treading water at the edge of the curb waiting for the light to turn. He can’t stop for even one second. The heart rate is too important. I think that’s why you see those types looking at their watches so often. They’re counting the heartbeats alongside the seconds, I think. Or, they like it that much. They love running so much they don’t want to let the time slip away.

I imagine that when people see me high-kneeing it on the corner Oddstad and Linda Mar Boulevard they must think, shit, he’s the real deal Holyfield.

I suspect food is next. My wife will begin a whole kale campaign.

With over 1000 percent of the daily requirement of vitamin K, how can you pass it up? she’ll say.

I didn’t know there was a vitamin K, I’ll say.

And the drinking is next.

The extent of my freedom shrinks and shrinks. I am the American dream in reverse. The Puritans are through the very next door. I can hear them praying and breaking tasteless bread.

I don’t smoke, I tell her. I’ll probably live forever.

And I do my best thinking sitting. I’ve worked hard for forty years to make sure that my work was done sitting instead of standing like when I was hanging drywall in the heat and waking before the sun just so I could try and beat some of it.

My father never had the executive chair to work towards. He worked with his hands but it was his hips and back that told the story. And the tool belt was the author of the breakdown, of the slow reformation of his spine into a question mark. All that weight for so many years is why he walked like a cartoon cowboy most of his life.

I tell my wife that thinking is the new standing, the computer the new hammer and nails, the new everything.

And beer, this beer, is the new black. But my old man could have told her that.

Luke Wiget is a writer and musician born and raised in Santa Cruz, California who lives in Brooklyn, New York. His stories have appeared in decomP, Hobart, and SmokeLong Quarterly, among others. For questions and/or complaints find Luke on Twitter @godsteethandme.

4 thoughts on ““Just the Reds” by Luke Wiget

  1. I recently replaced a smaller task chair with a larger executive chair in my den. I work at home so I spend a lot of time in the chair. The new chair is much heavier and wouldn’t budge on the carpet while I was sitting in it. Even when I was out of the chair it was a little stiff to move.These casters made a huge difference. I can roll around and move the chair making it much easier to use. The chair still doesn’t roll like a chair on a hard floor but I didn’t have the expectation that it would. These casters are twice the height of most casters so they look huge at first but I’ve gotten use to the look. They also lift your chair up 2″ so I now use it at the lowest height setting instead of raising it a little. While these were bit expensive they did what I’d hoped for and they were worth it to me.I’ll add that we have very dense short pile carpeting in our den. It is much softer and a bit thicker than what I would call “office” carpeting but shorter and denser than the carpeting we have in the rest of the house.

  2. The edge of the seat is flexible, taking pressure off of your thighs. The backing of the chair, a real attention grabber with it’s beautiful and intricate design, is able to bend and lean with you, no matter what angle you’re sitting at. Most chairs either go backward or forward; the Embody Chair can go backward and forward at the same time, not to mention sideways and torqued positions. It’s meant to keep your back comfy, and users who sit in the Embody Chair for long periods of time report increased mood and productivity, as well as never having to get up to stretch their legs or move around to get their circulation going. This is one reason why Embody makes a great office chair . What office wouldn’t be better off getting comfort and productivity out from the chairs that fill it?

  3. IMO, the Mirra chair is horrible. I’ve had the pleasure of having that chair as my work char on two different jobs, and both exhibited the same problem: the plastic back hurts after a while. I can’t stand it. Also, I like to sit on one of my legs sometimes, and not a single one of the chairs shown permits that (without breaking your leg, that is). My $350 Staples executive high-back (p)leather chair is the best chair I’ve ever used, and, oddly enough, it too has lasted over ten years. I’ve played games while sitting in it for 12 or more hours straight with nary a pain, and I’m no spring chicken (‘course, I’m not that old, either).

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