Boredom at Work

Boredom at Work

TEKST: BRUCE WENHAM

A nation of people are sitting at their desks and avoiding whatever simple operations they are supposed to be performing. Thousands of creative information workers are clicking and scrolling, abusing internet access to escape from this hot summer's boredom in the office.

Are you also dying of boredom at work? Signs to indicate this are e. g. You're reading THIS aren't you? Or you discover that staring at your cubicle wall long enough produces images of Grzegorz Kołodko dripping in gold with a new David Beckham hairstyle, or you are no longer content with merely photocopying your bum - you now scan it, and then distort it using Adobe Photoshop's filters.

In the past managers, lawyers and authors had the "creative" jobs. In this age of the digital revolution we are now experiencing the rise of a creative class consisting of a clone army of Dilberts: software engineers and programmers. But let's face it - most poor souls are still working in the boring service class - broom-pushers, cashiers, clerical workers, customer-service representatives, ASCO security guards, combined food preparation and serving workers - "would you like to upgrade your Big Mac meal to XXL for an extra zloty, Sir? ' (please, for Christ's sake, just give me the meal!).

But what do you expect from work - a potential form of personal expression and a source of deeper meaning of the universe? Work is just work - for the dosh right? You can't expect anything else than boredom from work. Even today's creative hi-tech jobs will evolve into boring jobs of tomorrow. Some say that boredom is in fact necessary for the idle mind to be inspired to create.

Boredom will remain, no matter that people are doing more interesting cutting-edge things than ever. The solution is to incorporate fun into the workplace. Humour reduces stress, increases creativity, improves morale and productivity and above all eases boredom! So, if you're feeling really bored, send an email to the rest of the company telling them what you're doing - 'If anybody needs me, I'll be in the toilet'. Or every time someone asks you to do something, ask them 'do you want fries with that'. Or send anonymous e-mails saying 'their giving out right now free grilled chicken with pasta salad followed by strawberry ice-cream in the canteen'. When your co-workers come back complaining that there was none, just lean back in your armchair, pat your stomach, and say, 'Huh - you've got to be faster than that! '

VOCABULARY

clicking - producing short, sharp ticking sounds with a computer mouse
scrolling - moving text/graphics up or down or from side to side in order to view data that cannot all be seen on a monitor at the same time
dripping - falling in drops
bum - the buttocks
broom-pusher - cleaner
cashiers - people who have charge of the receiving and paying of money
clerical - relating to general office work

dosh - money
cutting-edge - an area of study that breaks new ground, effects change and development
fries - French fries (fried potato sticks), as served at McDonald's
canteen - a restaurant attached to an office, factory etc.
pat - to delicately strike with the palm of the hand



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