I knew the world had finally gone mad when we took delivery of some new office chairs at work. The chairs came with a 24-page instruction manual, a tutorial CD-ROM, and a helpline number.
Chairs used to be straightforward things for sitting on. Or at least for parking coats and sweaters in student bedsits while everyone squatted on the floor instead. Or for throwing at each other at family weddings.
Anyway, the chair in our study packed in today. It had run out of gas. It couldn't be repaired, so we had to take it to the dump (right). It made BP's bike look enticingly like it was equipped with helicopter rotors.
Then it was off to Argos to get two new chairs. The store, that is, not the Greek city. We have actually cycled to Argos, Greece; it was quite a detour from our intended route to Athens, but how could we resist?
(I couldn't see why the chain store was named after it. The city didn't supply all its goods and services from an underground warehouse, it wasn't full of angry people taking their flatscreen TV back because they didn't like the programmes it was showing, and it didn't have a drunk in budget leisurewear at the entrance swigging from a can of Tennents and arguing with himself.)
Anyway, we then had to get the new chairs from Argos back home (right). It's amazing what you can transport with a rack and bungees. It would have been tricky to do it on a bus, horribly awkward on foot, and stressful by car, given the parking difficulties.
I'm not sure what passers-by of made of it, but they probably thought we had a pair of extremely large takeaway pizzas.
And we got them home easily and comfortably. Now all we have to do is wade through the manual, watch the tutorial DVD, and check out the chair's website, Flickr gallery, Facebook page and Twitter account...