Betty Moses

I can hear what you are saying to yourself — “There she goes talking about recliners again. The woman is clearly obsessed.”

Well, maybe I am, but let’s not dismiss the importance of recliners in the life of the average adult.

In 1930, an upholstered wooden bench recliner with a mechanical movement was patented and La-Z-Boy was born.

And you can bet your bottom dollar, that the first La-Z-Boy brought into homes was strictly for the benefit of the man of the family.

Do you ever see mama laid back in the recliner in old movies or TV sitcoms? No, it was always Dad or Grandpa who was stretched back, snoring with open mouth, while Mama or Grandma usually sat in a wooden rocker or straight chair.

This went on for years, and recliners could grow shabby and patched with duct tape, but still the man of the family claimed possession of the only one in the house and fought for it even if it stood out like a sore thumb whenever his wife redecorated the den.

Then someone had the bright idea of making one section of a couch or loveseat into a recliner, and boom, recliners were popping out all over, in all sizes and with all different methods of raising or lowering the seats.

I became a recliner lover when I broke my arm and shoulder a few years back and could not sleep lying down on a bed.

I quickly became addicted to sleeping in it and have been doing so ever since. I have been the owner of several chairs of different styles and containing different mechanisms,

I have had my battles with recliners, and, yes, sometimes they do fight back.

My first one actually threw me in the floor when I leaned a little heavily on one side when trying to get out of the chair. I laughed so hard I could barely get up off the floor. Remember, that was when I could actually get up from the floor by myself. It would not be a laughing matter now.

My newest recliner is one my son bought me for my birthday. It’s a spiffy little model with a controller that with the touch of a button swiftly rises me to a seating position or lowers me back into my reclining position.

Last weekend, my new chair attacked me.

Here’s how it happened.  

Madeleine and Collin, my two grandchildren, and I were preparing for a weekend trip. I was seated on my recliner (in lowered condition) and leaning way forward trying to fasten my sandals.

Suddenly the foot portion of my chair began to rise and I also began to rise, but as I was leaning forward, my body began to slide over the bottom of the chair.

I screamed to my grandson, “Push the button.” He looked at me in bewilderment.  “The control on the chair,” I yelled. “I’m sitting on it.”

I was about to go over the edge of the chair.

Collin managed to get his hand between me and the control and push the button the other direction before I was in the floor.

Disaster was averted. I know if I had fallen on the carpeted floor I would not have been injured — at least my body would have been safe. But my pride would be have been destroyed.

I recalled my adventures on vacation last year when I lost the battle with a gravity chair and had to call 911 to haul me off the floor.

I have no wish to repeat that experience.

Disaster was avoided thanks to the quick work of Collin, but I must be on alert or my chair will attack again. Just to be safe, the control mechanism of my chair  with the hair trigger buttons no longer dangles beside my leg in the chair, but is swept over the arm of the chair and fastened so that my body will no longer put the chair in motion.

When one is elderly, one never knows where danger might be lurking. Even your favorite La-Z-boy might attack.


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