Most of us spend most of our waking hours in a shared space, that has computers, blinds, a fridge if we are lucky and a number of people engaging at any one time with one or all of the above.
And then in this seemingly quiet environment, just like in one of those set up rooms where Big Brother films the sprawled limbs of contestants sitting around getting bored, in walks the Drama.
Or not quite.
In walks the chatty guy on his way to the fridge. Or the blinds. One thing about those office blinds is that they cause a small but steady number of people to develop a permanent obsession, which manifest itself in their continuous pulling up and down, accompanied by grunts of dissatisfaction.
And anyway, as chatty Co-worker walks by your computer aiming to correct the angle of the blinds, he slows down to look at your screen and then stops for a better read.
“Oh, so your mum is coming to visit!” he observes to your startled back. “When is she coming? That’s lovely. I hope my mum can come over at some point.”
You mumble a shared hope that his mum can indeed visit, suggest the month of May perhaps and then subtly return to your computer.
This time you open a big fat work email. This will shut him up, you cunningly smile to yourself.
It is an email he himself has received, it can be read in the comfort of his own chair so there would be absolutely no point in hovering.
But the thing is, there is.
“Oh, do we really have to do that? Noooo!” he thunders. “When is the deadline? Scroll down, will you, I can’t see that anywhere. Do they actually know how busy we are????”
Yes, we are extremely busy. So little time, so many opportunities to stick our nose in other people’s business. It’s just not fair.
How do you, smart people in offices everywhere, keep that little square in front of your eyes to yourself?