I haven’t gone into my office for three weeks. It occurs to me that I haven’t gone three weeks without walking inside a corporate office building since June 2003.
Maybe that’s why it feels a bit strange.
I’m lucky enough to still be working, albeit from home. And my company is as busy as ever during this crisis.
The best parts of working from home are obvious. The commute from my bedroom to the kitchen table is a dream. So is the dress code. We do Skype calls with the cameras off, so jeans and t-shirts have become my standard uniform.
Three weeks without the hassles of make-up and Lady Clairol don’t quite make up for a global pandemic, but it’s close.
There’s no birthday cake in the breakroom tempting me.
My boss can’t casually stop by my cubicle to remind me to put cover sheets on the TPS reports.
In fact, nobody causally stops by my cubicle.
I don’t even have to sit in a cubicle, that soul-sucking skeleton formerly know as an office.
I don’t have to look at pictures of my coworker’s daughter looking cute. Or hear the boring details of anyone’s weekend. No one is loudly smacking their gum while I’m trying to concentrate.
No one bothers me and ignores my I’m really busy body language.
No one steals my lunch out of the fridge. I heat it up in a sparkling clean microwave instead of one where someone exploded a burrito and slinked away without cleaning it up. I don’t have to smell anyone’s leftover fish.
I never start a fresh pot of coffee only to come back and find it all gone before I pour a cup.
I don’t have to pretend not to be falling asleep while watching someone diagram our new planning program on a giant white board.
There are no weird smells in my bathroom.
No more pesky coworkers! I work alone. I eat lunch alone. I take a mid-afternoon walk alone.
There’s no one to listen to the boring details of my weekend. Or to show the picture I took of Blinker looking cute. No one to surreptitiously roll my eyes at when the boss lectures us—again—on the TPS report cover sheets.
I’ve never gotten more accomplished in a day.
The corporate office, it seems, is hell on productivity.
And my coworkers are even more annoying than I thought.
I can’t wait to get back.