Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Take a Seat!

  • FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD: Franklin Deleanor Roosevelt was the first U.S. president to wear a prosthetic leg due to a bad reaction to the polio vaccine in his own, biological legs. This is why he insisted on always having his picture taken "relaxing" in various chairs.

  • The term "chairman" originally referred to the elected (or appointed) head of an executive board such as those that govern companies, schools, and governmental entities. During board meetings, the actual physical chair reserved for the "chairman" was traditionally larger and more comfortable than those of his subordinates. Today this term has largely been replaced with the gender-neutral "chairman or chairwoman."

  • HE DID IT HIS WAY: In his heyday, Frank Sinatra was known as "The Chairman of the Board," although this was purely an honorific and conveyed no actual power.

  • The popular "Barcelona" chair was the first piece of furniture designed by brothers Charles and Ray Eames for the Barcalounger company. Later this selfsame chair would be featured prominently in an episode of Thirtysomething.

  • LOUIS LOUIS, OH BABY, WE GOTTA GO NOW: The Louis XV chair was the successor to the wildly popular Louis XIV chair in 17th century France and England. However, due to the antique nature of furniture from that era, the Louis XV chair may look older than it appears.

  • The first electric chair was invented by Nicola Tesla in 1892 and debuted at the St. Louis World Fair that same year in 1894. The crowd was electrified (figuratively) by the spectacle of Indian-warrior-turned-sideshow-act Geronimo being "shocked" by a non-lethal voltage. Later, the death penalty was abolished in America, only to be re-instated by popular demand.

  • USA! USA! A recent study concluded that over 90% of Americans use chairs every day, as opposed to the rest of the world, which apparently employs these useful devices to a measurably lesser extent.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The "Barcelona" Chair was designed by architect Mies van der Rohe and not by husband and wife team Charles and Ray Eames.