Stan Lee at his standing desk

I used to be a standing desk skeptic, partially because of this report from Cornell and partially because, as everyone who knows me knows, I hate standing. But I’ve seen a lot of criticism of the Cornell thing for relying on studies that don’t really apply to standing desks in an office, and I’ve gathered enough anecdata to believe that it’s a good idea for me to at least try it.

But I’m troubled by one thing: if standing desks are such a great thing, why are they only taking off?

It’s not like it’s a new idea. Stan Lee, as seen above, was a proponent of working standing, and has a list of famous standers, including Benjamin Franklin, Leonardo DaVinci, Charles Dickens, Virginia Woolf, Earnest Hemingway and Winston Churchill. But the idea doesn’t seem to have gained mass appeal until recently. Why is that?