Love conquers all – hopefully even in an office

Well, first I would like to congratulate myself on escaping the fires of hell my big huge corporate entity job so that I could take a job with a little, itty-bitty, tiny company that hopefully doesn’t go bankrupt. Today was my last day at the former and Monday is the first day at the latter. And much to my surprise and horror, I’m a little freaked out by the big change and I’ll tell you why:

MY NEW JOB REQUIRES ME TO WORK IN AN….AN…..OFFICE.  WITH PEOPLE.  There. I said it.  I have never done that before except when I used to work as a temp in college, but I always knew I would be free of those whack jobs in a few weeks and I didn’t want to starve so I did it.  Oh, the stories I shall tell you about some of my temp jobs!! Not to worry – definitely on my to do list.  But I digress.

I’ve never actually worked in an office before. I always had jobs where everything is really flexible and I can work from home, or from some temporary cube, or I’m on the road, or with clients and nobody bugs me or cares where I am.  And I like that. Total freedom to wear my pajamas to work most days, or watch Oprah when it originally airs. The little girl in me that used to always inform people that they aren’t the boss of me has grown up and she feels exactly the same way.

But this new job…I mean, they told me it was flexible when I told them that I’m afraid of offices, but I feel like the culture is that they expect you to actually go there. Like, everyday.  So in some ways I’m super-curious because I’m not one to shy away from situations that will give me priceless fodder for my best-selling memoir I haven’t written yet, and I’m totally gearing up for water cooler banter/debates by Tivo-ing American Idol and Project Runway, but on the other hand…I mean, will it be like “The Office”? Will I get a desk next to some clown like Creed, or Angela or Kevin? Please, please, please, dear mother of GOD, put me next to Dwight and Jim Halpert.  Or Oscar.  Or even Toby. Toby’s good.

So this makes me think about which Office character I’m most like. Because I guess my new office mates are also wondering what the new chick is going to be like and whether I’m a loud food chewer, or if I don’t wash my hands after I go to the bathroom, or if I’m on the phone all day trying to order a huge new projector thing for my mega-church,  or if my husband works for Vance Refrigeration. I actually am none of those things.  Well, BD might accuse me of chewing too loud, but I’ve convinced myself that that’s more about his hang ups and less about my chewing volume. I’m not really like anybody on “The Office”, because my Awesomeness is hard to capture in just one character, but if you twist my arm I think…and I’m not proud of this, but I’m probably maybe closest to that goofy new receptionist chick.  She kind of looks normal and nice, but she is definitely a little freaky, and weird and clueless a lot. Which I think pretty much sums me up perfectly.  Except that I would never fall for the Nard-dogg. Just saying.  So I guess I’ll be her if a board game comes out.

But so anyway…how does one conduct oneself in the office? I don’t know why I’m asking the Internet since if you read my blog you clearly aren’t at work — or are you? Do they let you do that?! I’m assuming I can’t really blog at work anymore. Or read your delicious blog.  Or check Facebook at 34 second intervals. Or burp loudly after an especially satisfying gulp of Diet Coke. I suppose pouring myself a tall glass of Shiraz at 4 or doing 3.5 loads of laundry is out of the question.  And random lunches with random people at random times — not so much.  How do people do it? I mean, how much of a waste of time is it to be in an office all day? What if I have nothing to do? I think the cubes are situated in such a way that everybody can pretty much see what you’re doing because there aren’t really high cube walls or much privacy, so I think I have to have Excel open all the time to look like I’m officially working.

Also, I have to start traveling again. They told me I didn’t have to go very often when I told them I don’t like traveling, but I might go so insane in the office that I become a road warrior and turn out like that lady in “Up In The Air” who is inexplicably still hot with the worst 70s hairdo ever AND breaks George Clooney’s heart, which, I mean, come on – I would never do. So I have issues. At least at my totally unsatisfying, frustrating, uninspiring current job I just quit didn’t make me do things like go to an office and have a desk all day. I got to go to Cubs games and out to lunches and lots of 3 o’clock happy hours. But my company was an asshole.  Like, if the company could be a person, it would be the biggest ass you’ve ever met.  Which is weird, because the individuals that work there aren’t assholes, but it’s one of those Gestalt things where the sum was more than the parts and somehow the sum of decent, smart people equaled Really Huge Global Douchebag Corporation.

So why did I take this new gig? Well, probably the same reason I voted for Barack. And, no,  not because Oprah said. I would have voted for any damn Democrat, because I was really voting for not George Bush.  And this new gig is like that – it is not old gig.  Once in a while (every three years to be exact), you have to do something completely different.  And I’ve been at this one 3 years, so I had to go.  Plus at this new place, the people seem cool and the company does appear to be laid back, and they seem to actually get the concept that their employees are human beings with feelings and families, but in a work all the time sort of way, since it is small and everybody needs to pull their weight to make it awesome. Which is fine because I work a lot. I do. I just do it when I feel like it. When the mood strikes. And I’m afraid that at 8:30 in the morning, the mood is not normally striking. No. That is about the time when I go to the gym the 7 times I did in 2009.

Anyway, now I’m rambling. I hope that New Job is 100x sweeter than Old Job. It may turn out to be A Job. But no doubt I’ll have a whole host of new and interesting stories to tell you…I just hope I get a chance to write them down. I may have to change my blog name to “Very Important Site for People Who Are Successful and Productive” so when I’m writing in it and someone comes by my desk they’ll see that in really big letters and be satisfied that I am indeed working very hard and I might just be the best new hire they’ve made since the Kelly Kapoor-ish chick from two months ago.

Wish me luck. And I apologize in advance if the posts are coming a little slower in the next couple of months. Demonstrating my Awesomeness will likely take a lot out of me.  It’s not easy to do The Worm on hardwood floors.

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8 responses to “Love conquers all – hopefully even in an office

  1. Congratulations! I can’t stay at any job too long either, 3 years is a long time!

    Also, after working from home for 1.5 years and switching to an office job, I had to re-train myself to not do certain, um, bodily functions while sitting at my desk.

    Good luck with your new job and I hope it turns out to be what you wanted!

    From Love – Thanks. So it is possible to train myself for office life? I feel a bit better…

  2. Sister of (Love)

    So does that mean you have to take a drug test? I mean, you could still theoretically have a glass of wine at lunch right? I think they will all love you if you just stay sober enough to not tell them what is on your mind, really. Also, you may want to buy some motivational posters for your cube.
    http://www.marcofolio.net/imagedump/top_40_demotivational_posters.html

    From Love – I have already pledged myself to sobriety for at least the first six months so I don’t convey my deep thoughts about all of my coworkers to them at a happy hour. I should be good to go.

  3. But can you dance funky like the new office secretary? They may not like you without that skill…

    From Love – As I said, I’ll be working on The Worm until I have it down to perfection. That will surely secure my place as a beloved and professional coworker.

  4. check this…i AM at work…and in a CUBE ~gasp~ luckily, they’re the ones with the high walls ;0)

    i only wish my co-workers were as cool as The Office characters! & btw, i call the seat by Jim & Dwight..between the hottie & the class clown – what better spot! gosh i love that show!

    congrats on the new gig – i hope u totally love the new change of scenery & u make big things happen!

    ps. why’d you have to go & give away my Excel trick?! that’s when my best blog posts get posted! ;0)

  5. Yes you can blog at work and read other people’s blogs at work and check facebook 97 times a day. That is what I am doing right this very second and it is awesomeness.

    Let me tell you some other things that you can do to make yourself look busy….

    1. Get a “work related” gmail account. That way you can be checking your “work” emails WHILE GCHATTING WITH ME AND BELLE.

    2. Bring your bills from home and pay them online. This only consumes a little bit of time, but makes you look like you are doing very important paperwork.

    3. Do you get to keep an adding machine at your desk? In a pinch, you can just start punching away at that and people think you are a math genius.

    That is all I have for now, but I know there are tons others or else I wouldn’t get through a full work day.

    Congrats on the new job!!

    From Love – This advice is awesome. But I don’t have an adding machine yet. However, it sounds like a wonderful use of my time, because people will think I’m calculating all the extra revenue I’m bringing in so I’ll look into it. So far they have kept me very busy. So busy my blogging time has been .4 minutes every day, down from 4 hours. 🙂

    • Um, Love, how come I didn’t get a response?

      From Love – Um, probably because I suck now that I have a real, live job that requires real, live work. I haven’t been on my blog (or anybody else’s) for days. What have I done?!

  6. I’m at work, too, and most days manage to post a blog and catch up somewhat on my google reader. It’s all about TABS. And keeping notebooks open.

    Good luck!

    From Love – Thanks for the advice!

  7. Congrats on the new job! Hope you love it. Or at least don’t hate it.

    When I went back to an office last year I gained 20 pounds from sitting on my ass all day, so be careful! Wine is safer than the shit people leave in the breakroom!

    From Love – Good Lord. Fat and in the office. Not good for me. Not good at all. They have free Dr.Pepper there. I’m not going to lie. I drank two.

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