Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Er-NO-GO-nomic

My right arm is starting have a dull ache. My fingers of my right hand are remarkably cold while the left hand is fine. The right side of my body is tight and knotted. I crack my neck incessantly. I may even be starting to limp. Just slightly.

Do you know what these signs mean?

That I am about primed for a lawsuit.

Ha ha. Just kidding non-profit that I work for! Just. Kidding. I don't even know what "worker's comp" is . . . *ahem*.

But seriously? I am in P.A.I.N. I need a new office set up. When I sit at my desk my keyboard tray slants down towards me and basically rests on my thighs. This is not how it is supposed to be. Even I know that. The irony is that the tray holds an ergonomic keyboard. Sure, my fingers are on the right keys but a lot of good that does when the tray is broken. The mouse sits up on my desk to my right, not on the nifty little tray that slides out from the keyboard tray. Why? Because someone cleverly stuck a file cabinet right in the way. There is no room to pull it out, thus rendering it useless. I have a foot rest but really all that does is support my legs to hold up the broken keyboard tray. The arms of my chair get in the way so that my elbows have little room to move and there is no back support whatsoever. I stretch periodically while stationed at my desk but all the yoga moves in the world can't counteract the damage of this un-ergonomic work station.

Do you feel my pain?

I suppose it is time to take matters into my own hands (before I lose all feeling in my right one). I'm going to have to get down under my desk amidst the paper scraps and forgotten pens and try to fix the tray myself with a screwdriver and a lot of swearing. Too bad we don't have any duct tape lying around. My dad used to fix everything with duct tape and swearing. It was genius.

21 comments:

Will said...

"My dad used to fix everything with duct tape and swearing."

I was going to tell you that knee hurt a little today. But I don't want to end up duct taped to a chair with Siz cursing at me.

Now that I think about it. My knee feels much better.

goldmoon said...

I DO feel your pain, Siz! I always get bad headaches at work, and I know some of it is due to my desk set up. Good look fixing it, with or without duct tape!

Nicky said...

Ack! Pay attention to this. I got carpal tunnel way back in the day and had to get some occupational therapy. My hands went back to normal but there was a short time there when they would tingle and get numb and when I couldn't hold a coffee cup that was so scary. Changing my desk setup did wonders. No job is worth the comfort and functioning of your body.

One thing that some people do is replace their chair with one of those balance balls you see in the gym. It's supposed to be pretty good for your posture and your core. A proposal to consider. (And, of course, get your keyboard in the right place.)

Really, don't wait to take care of this....

ocg said...

My neck just got stiffer (seriously) while reading your post...

Be careful with that screwdriver! Especially if your hand isn’t fully functional AND you have no workers comp…

Just sayin’

Kevin said...

My office set up defies all ergonomic statutes ever devised. But they'd probably have to fire me to make room in the budget to buy what I need to make everything right. Hence why I keep ibuprofen in my desk drawer.

Mrs. Ca said...

I tried to move things around in my office and they told me I couldn't. Something about me getting hurt and workman's comp. I work for a non-profit as well, and I know they don't want to have to cough up any money that isn't absolutely necessary.

gronce said...

I have lived the misery of CT. It sucks. Find a way to move your space around. If you don't, you might be spending your weekends knocked out on meds because the pain is so great.

It took some getting used to, but I moved my space around.

I feel your pain.

alissa said...

My dad adores duct tape, caulk and velcro, I'm sure one of those could work for you!

I do feel your pain, I don't sit properly and I know this, but I still question why I'm always in pain.

Mr_Rodacre said...

I once had tendonitis which was kinda like carpal tunnel... not fun.

If I wasn't sick - I could totally help out with your desk. I'd even bring my own duct tape, screwdriver/drill bits and a few bon mots of my own... =)

Neil said...

Surely, there is someone you can sue. Does Larry Parker, attorney at law, who's always on daytime TV commercials in Los Angeles, have offices in Santa Cruz?

Nihilistic said...

I do feel your pain!!

Rabbit said...

I'm suddenly happy that I don't sit at a desk all day.

Mikey said...

Is this a H.I.N.T for Mikey to come to the ORG. and give you a massage

Claire said...

Dude, that sucks! Take a pair of pliers with you too- if your tray is rigged with bolts, you may need them. Good luck!

Bre said...

I have two "tools" - duct tape and my credit card. If it can't be fixed with duct tape, then I use my credit card to buy a new one!

Lizzie said...

Sometimes kicking at things and throwing the screwdriver down in disgust helps too... you know, just in case the swearing isn't enough. Good luck!

K said...

Dang psychosomatic pain! Now I'm feeling it! It figures. I never feel it when I read about someone getting a massage...

sandra said...

I'm suddenly in love with my job a bit...based strictly on the fact that we have fabulous chairs and adjustable desks.

That said, I like to sit cross-legged in my chair. Which I'm not sure is recommended by any...posture-related doctor. What the hell would that be? Orthopedic doc?

Krisco said...

I feel your pain.

Gary said...

I see only two solutions. Either get things fixed or learn to do everything left handed. :)

Bill said...

I've had these problems off and on but generally I'm okay, even though I work at a computer all day writing and editing. But ...

I think what saves me is I'm antsy. I can't sit still for more than 20 minutes. I'm always getting up and moving around and then going back to what I was working on. In the office (when I'm there), I don't pick up the phone, e-mail or IM someone. I get up and go over to their desk - just for an excuse to move.

At home, where I usually work, I have computers in two rooms and I'm constantly going back and forth between them. I think it's the inability to sit still that saves me from these pain problems. (Though duct tape can help too.)