Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Bartleby on Madison.

SETTING: The ever-so-efficient open-plan office. It is early morning, people are filing in. The over-heads are not on, so it is dark, and the office is nearly silent save for the lonely chatter of fingers on keyboards. The AE enters.

AE: You know what I hate? People who say you should wear flats because they're more comfortable.
AS: (They share a work pod. She spins in her chair to face the AE who is massaging her left foot.) They're pinching?
AE: Right in the back.
AS: You need those little pads.
AE: There's no room. They're a 7 and fit perfectly.

The turn back to their desks and eat their rice cakes.

I know some organizational change consultant has told the world that open-plan seating speeds processes and optimizes collaboration and cohesion, but he probably never got to work early and had to hear about shoes.


Graham Strong said...

Just think -- Bartleby would have died for cubicles. Sure, no hum from endless computers, lights, and personal face fans, but have you ever heard the dips and scratchings of a hundred fountain pens all in one room?

(Okay, me neither, but I can just imagine -- like scores of mice all clawing to get in. Ick.)


PS - Speaking of ick, did AE wash his/her hands before going back to the rice cakes?

george tannenbaum said...

Graham, no hand-washing.

I work in an ad agency. There is no Lady Macbeth-like feelings of guilt, grief and torment.

Teenie said...

I used to love overhearing phone conversations where people would fight with mom, berate spouse, or book gynecological appointments.

Amen for a shared office. With a door, no less.