Echoes of my Neighborhood

Cubicle Sweet Cubicle!

Hello! It’s Thursday once again and time to share snapshots of my neighborhood. First of all, I can’t believe it is ONLY Thursday. This has been such a long week. And I am afraid that full moon lunacy and spring weather fever have combined to make people even crazier than normal!

I started planning my photologue last week as I was writing a poem about nesting. We all build nests wherever we happen to be. I work in a cubical maze in a office area that connects to a huge warehouse operation. In the office you can tell when someone has settled into their surroundings by the way they arrange their workplace.

So I thought I would share a glimpse of the various treasures and oddities to be found in the cubicles where I work.

Stopping in my own happy space before we enter into the belly of the beast!


This is where I live 9-10 hours a day, 5 days a week! My Cubicle Sweet Cubicle!


Entering the portal now…This space houses roughly 70 cubicles. The planners opted for low walls to make people feel less claustrophobic. 🙂

I have found that there are distinct personality styles to cubicle decor. If you work in an office setting, perhaps you know a few of these characters too!


The Collector fills their space with, you guessed it, collectables. It’s like a curio cabinet on a shelf. Extra bonus points if, like this example here, the Collector displays things with a particular cause or theme in mind (Breast Cancer awareness is featured here). Collections can be seasonal too. Snowmen in the winter and the like. Why do we collect things? Because it makes us happy. These folks are generally a happy bunch! 


Ah, the Gardener! I admire those with a green thumb. I am not good at it. Real live greenery (not the synthetic, plastic variety) is as lovely in the Cubicle world as it is outside. I also believe that Cubicle gardens are quite necessary to oxygenating the stagnant, recycled air in our “air-conditioned” sealed environments. So…Bravo Cubicle Gardeners! You help us all to be healthier!


Like the Gardener, the Zookeeper loves to be surrounded by living things. In this case a fish tank. I have also seen frog habitats in my walks through the quad. Some people will simple set up a bubbly fountain in their space for the calming ambiance it creates. Others will install special lighting. But whatever the practice, all have life-sustaining and enhancing qualities. And fortunately for others, one can pause a moment at these special cubicles to take in the zen, without the upkeep involved. 


Speaking of sustaining life, next on the list is the Survivalist. Everyone who works in an office knows that one place to get a chocolate fix, or a chip, cookie or mint. The Survivalists set up office pantries and are often quite willing to share in a pinch. Just remember to return the favor in kind if you happen to need to rely on the generosity of the Survivalist! They will remember if you’re just a taker.


And every office needs our next Cubicle personality to keep the morale high. Enter the Social Butterfly. Their cubicle will change with the holidays and the seasons. And not just a lone figurine mind you, but full out garland framing, wall ornaments, trees (if the season calls for it), banners and statues. Ever mindful of the Fire Marshall rules and regs, the Social Butterfly will push their cubicle decorating to the limit, delighting us all in the process.


Closely related to the Social Butterfly is the Sports Fan. If it is the latest scores, stats or schedules you need, this is your person. Though it is best to navigate the Sports Fan landscape carefully. Rivalry and competition are not uncommon in these Cubes. If you are rooting for, or at least not opposing, the “right” team, there is nothing these loyal fans won’t do for you. Go Team!


….and speaking of loyalty and devotion, you will find some Cubicles inhabited by the quiet Devotees. Unlike rude and rowdy Bible Thumpers (who are forbidden by Human Resources from proselytizing), the Devotees are generally kind, generous and privately reverent in their practice. You may recognize their space by the presence of a random artifact or two, as you see here. Beautiful simplicity, calling all of us to our higher selves without saying a word.


Also not one to say much is the Clock Watcher. This model employee is here for one thing only…to do their time, leaving at the stroke of 5 pm to live life to the fullest elsewhere. You won’t find any collectibles or plants, or anything that might reveal their personality. Their cubicle is meant only for, and filled with, work…piles of work. I respect these hard workers though. No Drama!


If it’s drama you want, look to the Hoarder. Their cubicles are much like a curiosity shop. You can find just about anything here. This person has likely been with the company for quite some time, hence the unruly collection of stuff. But on the bright side, this is the person you would go to if you need something…whether it is information or a random staple puller thingie. Chances are good that the Hoarder will have just about any thing-a-ma-bob you might need…if they can find it!


Then there is that brilliant mind whose cubicle might resemble a cave more than a desk! That person is none other than the Geek. This person is not much on socializing or conversation, but when your computer has a virus or your phone has lost it’s dial tone, this is the person you want in your corner. Get in good with a Geek and you’ll benefit from being the first to receive assistance when the system crashes. And you might even get a few great tips to make your life easier if you pay attention. When they do speak, you should listen.


 This last one is definitely someone you need to keep an eye on, especially if they have once been fluent in one of the other personalities during their tenure. The Minimalist is either a new person who hasn’t felt comfortable enough to move in yet. They’re probably not sure they’re even going to stay. OR it is the seasoned employee who is ready to move on. Little by little the plants will move to greener pastures, the collectibles will will disappear one by one, and the only clue you will have that anyone is even using this cubicle will be the flash of the monitor in sleep mode when they’re on break. When you see the signs you can be sure the their resumes have already been updated and are making the circuit. It’s just a matter of time.

So there you have it. My Cubicle World. I’m sure you can come up with a few more Cubicle Personalities from your own experience. If we have to spend 40 plus hours in these places, we might as well make them interesting!

If you would like to see other neighborhoods from around the globe, click HERE to join in! Thanks Jacqueline for hosting this fun challenge! 🙂



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