Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:
Where did Americans get the assumption that if I work in the same office with other people, they’re automatically bosom buddies entitled to know everything about my life, and entitled to regale me with humorous anecdotes about every detail of their lives?
If I wanted to know about your kid’s Cub Scout dinner last night, I would have asked. If I wanted you to know the details of my weekend, I would have told you.
Am I a curmudgeon, or is everybody else a gasbag? Or both?
I asked a friend who said: “Yes, you are a curmudgeon. The other people are being sociable. They are assuming (apparently incorrectly) that you are socially engaged with those around you. It’s a social contract. When trapped in an elevator or mine shaft or cube farm for 8 hours, you talk a little. You work in a government bureaucracy, so your social contract requires even more talking, plus loafing, web surfing, coffee drinking and paper shuffling. There are other rules the social contract. You are not required to engage in certain topics, for example. Although that’s where the problems tend to arise these days since under the new and improved version of the social construct you are expected to be diverse, agreeing with the Liberal mantra at every opportunity in your own unique way. That’s something you’re no good at; hence, the curmudgeon label. You should work from home making millions in your spare time, I see ads for those jobs every day.”
I suppose he’s right. Only 13 years until I can retire.
I’ve become very thankful that I get to work from home.