Thursday, July 13, 2006

I am not an Office Monkey

Every now and again, when I am out on the road for work, I get asked where do I see myself in three years.

My most honest answer is 'Not in an office.' I have left the rat race and my pen at the office zoo.
Honestly, they do everything but post signs on the cubicles asking passersby not to feed the workers monkeys.

My ten worst memories of office work:

10 - The boss telling me I will soon put emphasis on quantity over quality.
- I laughed. Within 3 months I truly did value quantity v. quality. Not because I desired to lower the quality of my work but because that is what the company emphasized.

9 - Those tiny gray-walled cubicles.
- with only enough room for a briefcase and a chair
- counter space is limited to a cup, a paper holder and a stapler (pictures had to be tacked to the cubicle walls).

8 - Justifying time away from the desk
- Not since 2nd grade did I ever have to ask permission to leave the desk to go to the bathroom (management could not trust that staff would be responsible enough to stay at their desks and actually do things like work)

7 - The company refrigerator
- where was it posted in the Employee Handbook that any lunch left in the 'fridge was community property? I've actually added extra tobasco and/or chocolate laxatives to my 'lunch'.

6 - One hour lunches
- this policy is aired by the companies, however if they can get you to take your 'hour' at your desk, preferably without food, and limit actual down-time to 5-10 minutes...

5 - Other office Monkeys
- let's face it, there are other co-workers monkeys that just do not seem to pull their weight.
- there are those that wish to gossip all day. Any topic. You do not have to actually listen, just be physically present. I actually had to sit through a conversation where 'Jerry McGuire' was exalted as being the best movie ever made..!
- I once sat near co-monkey who mad a trip to the restroom every 15 minutes. Every day.
- Other Irritating personal habits:

- an actual bark/squawk while talking
- incessant burping/blowing of nose/coughing/clearing throat of imaginary phlem/and farting
All that was missing was another office monkey willing to pick his butt and sniff the offending finger...

4 - New Office Philosophies
- B.S.!! Anybody remember the 'Upside-Down Pyramid' structure? You know the one where the company president is the least valued employee? After that particular speech, I asked my supervisor where I needed to go to negotiate my golden parachute...

3 - Recycled Germs
- turns out that I am a germ sponge. If I do not get fresh air on a regular basis, then I will catch everything that is brought into the office and passed around via the air vents. I cannot think of any year in which I finished with any sick days left over...

2 - Office Politics
- Personally I support whomever's signature is on my paycheck.

- I was once denied the opportunity to interview for a supervisoral position because, "I wore my sunglasses to my desk and walked slowly, as if I did not want to be at work...
(I wore Transition Lenses at the time--they were still a fairly new innovation--and when one is routinely 10-15 minutes early to the office why the hell should I rush to the desk. Did you notice I was not criticized for being routinely late?)

1 - Temperature control
The person in charge of setting the thermostat in the office is probably the most sadistic person to walk the face of our world. I have actually been in offices in the WINTER, when the thermostat was set at less than 52 degrees. Folks that was cold! But it was worse in the summer when the boiler excessively utilized.

So whenever I start to get frazzled or frustrated or desire adult conversation, I just remind myself where I could be and I really do find myself feeling much, much better...


creative-Type Dad (Tony) said...

My name is Tony, and I'm currently an office monkey.

Although I get to do work on at home sometimes (it's more creative there).

Diana said...

I think I would kill myself if I had to work in a cubicle. I get the nice open desk area, the agents are the monkeys in the cubes.
But I would rather work from home....

J's Mommy said...

Ugh, I hated my office job. Office politics suck and it doesn't help when your boss is a psycho bitch.

Rebecca said...

I actually don't mind my job. And I work with some really good people, so that part is a-ok, too. But still....sometimes, the idea of freedom makes my mouth water. It sounds wonderful.