08 May 2008

my cubicle

I am a cubicle-dweller.

You know, it's a really nice cubicle. It is wooden (not that gray carpetish stuff) and it even has little windows. Well, the windows look into other cubicles, but still...

It is a strange existence in the cubicle. You really could go days in there without ever looking another human in the eyes. Your computer screen opens to the rest of the room, so if someone walks by there is this constant pressure to look like you're working, even though half of the room is on the internet reading about Britney Spears or the Spurs at any given moment. I think everyone keeps a fake spreadsheet in a minimized window with ALT+TAB just waiting to be pushed.

And I have to admit that I have (more than once) wondered if this is what the creators of The Matrix had in mind when they thought up those creepy human farms. I mean, honestly, what else are we there for? We produce, the system consumes, we go home to recharge, and then the system consumes that the next day. If I thought about it too much, I'd probably end up under my desk in the fetal position cuddling with the electric three-hole puncher. And, just so you know, I broke the electric three-hole puncher today. I don't think it was designed to take 80 pages at once. It started buzzing and whining and basically disintegrating before my eyes. Should I tell someone... or walk away....tell someone...walk away...?

Look, I'm not complaining. My cubicle is nicer than a lot of my African friends' houses. It is just a weird place to be all day. Especially when you're the new guy. My phone never rings (ever), I never get emails (except forwards about menopause from my cubicle-farm neighbors), and I don't really have much company schwag (read: logoed crap) to decorate with yet. I do find that drinking lots of coffee in the morning and water in the afternoon will inspire nearly half-a-dozen bathroom breaks a day, which is a nice way to break up the monotony.

I enjoy my job. I enjoy the people I work with. I am thankful for a paycheck and benefits and the ability to be a part of something larger than myself. I'm just saying that when people flip out in the workplace (you know, throwing computers out windows, having Vietnam-flashbacks - that sort of stuff)...well, I understand.

Enjoy this video - it should be required Friday afternoon viewing for the cubed-masses...


  1. A friend of mine worked in a call center for a major insurance company, and row upon row of cubes was so conformist it hurt my 19-year-old anti-authoritarian mind...

    i guess you could say the cube is perhaps the most conformist symbol of them all.

  2. it really defeats any attempts at personal expression and thought...and, since that was probably the intent, then i guess we can credit them with a brilliant design. brutal, but brilliant. sigh.