I'm not a "morning person"

I'm writing this from the office and I feel like I should still be in bed.

Tell, you what, I'll describe what I can see. Our office is painted from head to foot in exciting beige. What little wallpaper I can see is an exciting mix of light beige, dark beige and grey. This all helps our computer terminals fit in nicely as they come in standard beige. My particular little officelet is decorated with a giant poster of Homer Simpson in full "D'oh!" glory, a little Austin Powers (International Man of Mystery) poster amd a few other little posters that I've printed out off the web, including a Wallace and Gromit one. I have a phone, in an attractive sort of whitey beige, number 306 ****. There's a pile of books, mostly encyclopedias, at the end of the desk and an advert for polo mints on one wall from when this office was owned by someone else. Behind me I can see Christine's and part of Caitlin's office. They seem to share a liking for dead trailing plants as the partition between where they work is adorned by a rather sorry looking example of the species. Beyond that there's nothing much except the carpet, a sort of browny effort but with noticable speckles of beige, and the ceiling painted in the traditional white. Although here, us being a little more adventurous than the regular office types, we've gone for white with a hint of beige.

The air conditioning seems to be working today, at least I can hear something churning away and I'm not burning up, so I assume it's working. Across my partition, I can just hear Publishing Production warm up for the day. If this company was owned by Japanese people, Production would spend five minutes each morning ripping packing tape off a reel, being "firm but fair" down the phone to an imaginary subordinate and shouting across partitions to one another, all done at high volume and combined with phones which ring just out of synch with one another, don't get answered for twelve rings and when they do are answered with a grating call of "Publishing Production, how can I help you?" This way, they would be on form by nine o'clock each morning instead of half past nine as now. Well, right now (it's approaching ten to nine) more people are starting to get into the office and the morning chat is taking place. This is a typical office ritual and while it is usually written off by the boss as part of staff bonding and team building, it's actually a cunningly disguised way of wasting time. Nobody wants to start work this early in the morning, so they just clock in and stand/sit around chatting and drinking tea for half an hour. Apart from lunchtime and going home, this is the best bit about work. As it approaches nine o'clock I'm getting rather excited. Understandable since that's when the canteen opens and I can get a scone to go with my cup of tea.

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Larks and owls Aug 20, 1999


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