I was born into a sedentary culture.
An archaeology of injury...
My left hand still has injury from police violence two years ago.
I'm still injured from intimate partner violence ten years ago.
I'm still injured from falling down the stairs 28 years ago.
That concussion five years ago sure threw me for a loop.
I suffer from extreme pain on an average day and need 4-12 hours of physiotherapy a day to cope.
The fungibility of time matters more to the radically time-poor.
In first year University I developed tendinosis and couldn't play piano for two years, forcing me to branch out into other disciplines earlier than I'd planned to.
This is not news.
I was born into a sedentary culture. My grandparents said 'sit still!' readily, and I spent half my time there. My mother's father had to sit still himself because he miraculously lived many years with a giant aneurism by playing it safe. He'd also sat for a living as a civil servant at base borden, and as a street car driver. (When he was a cop or a farmer, or a convenience store owner he was more mobile.) His wife's mother taught in a one-room school house telling children to sit still, no doubt.
I knew him after the aneurism and his own temper may have given it to him as he'd learned to chill the fuck out without weed but from my perspective the aggression skipped a generation as his three daughters learned from him when he was younger.
My grandmother sat and did her knitting and they both sat and watched tv, the first couch potatoes, addicted to young and the restless, although not without active discussion. My mother liked it too, so much that I convinced her we could watch TV with family dinner.
My father André Golding sat, although I never knew him after his death from lung cancer when I was twelve months, as an English teacher and a writer, and his father, Robert Golding sat before him, I suspect.
Today, I have a standing desk, and chronic pelvic pain syndrome, something Glenn Gould suffered from as well. Playing piano is, of course, traditionally a sedentary activity but it needn't be, but have you ever seen an acoustic 'standing piano' at the same keyboard height as a standing desk? Nope, you haven't, only with electronic instruments.
I also sat at the computer, early adopter of the internet, like the Keanu who had to learn to walk later, computer junkie descended from two generations of couch potatoes, and sat as I read at my desk, and even sat when I listened to recorded music -- both in music lessons and in my own time. (I also sat competitively on the high-school speed-chess team...and for a living at North County Books…)
I didn't take dance lessons, like a girl (or so they would have said in Barrie) and my mobility came mainly from biking, something I gave up when I moved to UofT Campus, and something which has helped me regain a lot of mobility only this year, by committing to a work schedule that involves 5 hours of biking per week to commute to after-school programs I teach. (And the shifts are short enough that I can cope with the situation physically.)
When I teach these programs, I find the problem already unsolvable: the school has already purchased desks and chairs years before I arrive, I cannot break the cycle! There is not a sit-stand desk, an adjustable chair, or a stool to encourage standing anywhere in sight! (Much less any room that invites two or more postures instead of one uniform, fixed posture for all participants in the room.) There are also not standing meetings.
Meanwhile recess should be doubled and speed prescriptions halved until ADHD is mysteriously eliminated from the planet...
This is, like Chomsky taught us about the educational system modelled on prisons and student debt more generally, a disciplinary system: uniformity of posture is uniformity of thought and not only are students saddled with financial debt, every single one of us emerges from this system with a movement debt which pushes many of us over the edge: this is ultimately where chronic pain and fibromyalgia come from: from social, and, correspondingly, physical, immobility. It is a debt which many of us can never fully repay with our years remaining on this earth, if we turn the tide at 60 or at 70, but we can hope: despite the pain at age 40 my physical mobility is far greater than at 35, which is the reverse of the usual pattern. This atlas is one not shrugged, but shifted and such is the path to social mobility: physical mobility; so be more mobile today than yesterday and move more today than yesterday.
I got thinking about this today while discussing a dog's hips.