Chairs of Our Lives


What is it: Herman Miller – the seating that performs for you
Where is it: My chair at work – and everyone has the same Herman Miller chair 😀
How do you relate to it: This is seriously the only chair ever that doesn’t give me back pains. Don’t know how it does the magic!! (It’s definitely not because work is more enjoyable, LOL)

How well does it function, and how does it make you feel: I never knew Herman Miller is so famous and sort of take it for granted thinking it’s a work chair that aligns with JTB’s corporate color (red). Yet, I indeed discover it is the first chair ever in my life that doesn’t give me back and hip pain (I have chronic lower back pain). Until one day, a director was talking about Japanese companies in general, have very good benefit packages for employees. He mentioned the chair is about $300+ per unit. And there’s this conspiracy theory behind the Herman Miller chair: It is so comfortable so most people

will seat for more than 2 hours straight before one feels tired and wants to stand up walking around. Believe it or not, most Japanese workers staying in the office for over 10 working hours every day. Guess that Herman Miller chair is just too comfy :p

I’ve never heard people compliment the chair. If it’s a bad chair, people will nag about it non-stop. But when it’s a good chair, people tend to take it for granted and not notice the good of it. I told my trainee “Look Herman Miller Chair is in my professor’s lecture!” She was so surprised that we have such a good chair for everyone and nobody ever paid any attention to it.

A quote from Don Norman’s book:

“Good design is actually a lot harder to notice than poor design, in part because good designs fit our needs so well that the design is invisible,”
― Donald A. Norman, The Design of Everyday Things



What is it: Study room chairs (brand unknown)
Where is it: In the apartment study room
How do you relate to it: Since my old printer is not working, I come here a lot to use the computer for printing. This is the corner spot I always sit at.

How well does it function, and how does it make you feel: First off, the height adjustment handle is already gone (broken), haha. Since this spot has a Mac computer, I’ll normally bear with the fact this chair has the seating so high my legs are able to reach the ground (and I’m 5’4). When no one’s around I swap the chair. But somehow this one always come back!!

To me, the chair needs to be looked at within its physical context. This study room makes me feel the apartment community really had taken care of residents’ needs: Given most people living here are mostly working with family, they really put efforts to have good furniture and common work areas for those who sometimes, cannot separate office from home easily. We have a neighbor who is a real estate investor and works there every day for the past month because the internet is not working at home. We got the chance to know him because of this study room’s broken chair and printer issues, LOL. A nice place to meet neighbors I assume 🙂


What is it: IKEA Sofa (with customized legs :> )
Where is it: In my living room
How do you relate to it: 100% DIY by my hubby!

How well does it function, and how does it make you feel: For our first sofa at home, we spent a lot of time researching and trying all types of sofa, then decided to buy this one from IKEA.

The chair is very comfortable. After trying a couple of different ones, this one fits into our needs functionally, financially, and emotionally.

When it comes to IKEA, I really see my husband wants to show how dedicated he is to the house 😀 He purchased a set of toolbox (and gave it a nickname, haha, very interesting to learn about his inner child aspect), assembled all furniture and planned to keep them until we have our first born so he can say to the baby “look, daddy, built the house.” –> And I’ll let him keep the story that way as exasperating as it is. Of course, we have an emotional attachment to the sofa. Red is the color of Love, and we both graduated from USC (fight on!) The sofa is equal to home, comfort, and a relaxing movie night to us 🙂

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