February 5th, 2011


Slouching: a bijou rantette.

So, one of the objects for sitting on that resides in our sitting room is a single futon, with frame, arranged as a wide chair. It's a reasonably comfortable object, wide enough on occasion for two, with a mattress in pretty good condition and a sloped back. You can sit on it and curl up, lean back, read, lean forward, talk, participate. Just like a normal chair, in other words. (Yes, there can be cushions for those that like them -- and I do. But they're not mandatory. They can be removed.)
And yet, week on week, the marquis' role-players arrive and sit on it and, well, slouch. The back of the mattress gets pulled down into a roll. The seat part gets slid forward part onto the floor. The frame at the top gets exposed and uncomfortable so they stuff it with cushions. And I get to spend time, week on week, beating the thing back into shape. It's not just our futon, either. I see the same thing with those squashy sofas some people have. The back cushions pounded down into lumps. The seat cushions dragged forward. The whole thing displaced and distressed and, well, not as it should be.
And it's all down to the slouch, the seemingly pathological need of some people (nearly always male, she opined darkly) to flop and lean and drape and do anything but d*mn well sit on things.
Now, I do not slouch. I sit pretty upright most of the time. I tend to dislike deep sofas, in fact, because I have to perch (and therein lies the purpose of extra cushions, btw -- back support). Slouching doesn't work for me, not one bit. I get neck ache and back ache. I can't balance things on my knees properly, I can't see people as well as I like. And, you know, I'm on the tall side. I have long legs and a long waist. Deep sofas are easier for me than for some others. But I still don't slouch.
And I don't get the slouching, either. What on earth is it about? Does the male spine have gelatinous tendencies? Are male shoulders so broad and so heavy that the sheer weight of them pulls the whole body inexorably downwards? What is it for? And why on earth is it necessary to squidge and squash and abuse my poor futon in order to get what is apparently some form of comfortable?

This post (which may not be entirely serious) brought to you by the department of What On Earth? (With a side order of futon-reshaping.)

Skirt of the day: purple cherry blossom. (I haven't forgotten about the photo project. It's in the works.)