Nothing incites the general public more than someone trying to charge for something that was once free. Yet that’s exactly what entrepreneur Oscar F. Spate tried to do in the New York City parks in the blistering summer of 1901. It all started in Central Park on June 22, 1901, when a group of people spotted rows of bright green rocking chairs along the park’s mall, near the casino. Usually in this same spot, stood rows of uncomfortable wooden hard benches, so it was a pleasure indeed for the park-goes to sit and rock and enjoy the wondrous summer day.
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Spate also told the reporters he was doing the city a favor, since charging for the chairs would keep the undesirables (read – the poor) out of the parks, thereby keeping the parks sparkling clean and free of loiterers who leave a mess in their wake. The outrage from the New York City press and from philanthropists came swift. Randolph Guggenheimer, the president of the Municipal Council, said he ”saw no good reason for allowing private parties to occupy park grounds and make money through a scheme like this.” The New York City Central Federated Union sent a statement to the press denouncing both Spate and Clausen for their ”hideous actions.” The New York Tribune wrote in an editorial, ”This is only another instance of the hopeless stupidity of the present Park Commission.” The New York Journal also wrote an editorial defending the ”rights of poor people to sit in public park.” However, the New York Times saw no problem in what Spate was doing, as long as ”the prices were regulated properly.”
By this time, the president of the Park Commission George C. Clausen was figuratively tearing the hair from his own head. Having first said he could do nothing about the situation without the permission of the rest of the Park Commission, Clausen then reversed himself and said since he was the one who had confirmed Spate’s contract, he could also revoke Spate’s contract with New York City. Spate quickly answered by by getting a court injunction ”restraining Mr. Clausen and the Park Commission from interfering with his valid contract with the City of New York.”
RFM Preferred Seating : The brand featuring the office chair heralded as one of the most comfortable office chairs of all time certainly would have been expected to do well this year, and they did not disappoint! It’s hard to top many of the chairs offered by RFM, but they certainly outdid themselves with the chairs from their Verte series. The 22011 Verte Ergonomic Office Chair by RFM and its two sibling chairs from RFM Preferred Seating features a back that molds itself to the shape of the user’s spine, making it one of the most comfortable chairs in existence. They are not alone though! RFM’s mission is to keep designing chairs that are always at the forefront of innovation. Many of their chairs, particularly the Verte, Echelon, and Internet, feature ergonomic design to improve all aspects of the office experience, from comfort to productivity. With a mission like that, its no wonder they’ve done so well this year!