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Newport Independent - Newport, AR
A lighter look at life in the slow lane.
Office walls 101
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By Leslie Fite
Leslie Rose Fite is a native of south Arkansas and grew up with a family filled with dysfunction and laughter.
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By Leslie Fite
July 13, 2012 12:01 a.m.





Wanted: office mate - must tolerate chatterboxes well.







I have an office with permanent walls. In case you didn't catch it, that's a huge step for most people in the business world. Granted, I only have three of them rather than four, but still. They don't move when I run into them (a common occurrence for clumsy people with depth perception issues), so they count. This is usually a sure sign of status and moving up in the world when you get out of the cubicle stage. Short of a flashy job title, nothing says "I'm important," like real walls. There's only one problem with this huge accomplishment - my new employer doesn't have cubicles, so since I'm the only one missing a wall, it may actually say I'm least important. That being said, it was still really cool to realize I had walls.







If you've never worked in an office with cubicles, I'll shed some light on the matter. There are the kind with fake walls that go almost to the ceiling. You must yell a little louder to talk to your neighbor, and throw a little harder to pass office supplies or chocolate to your coworker in need (I once got a busted lip this way from a flying roll of tape - this is what happens when the protocol of yelling "catch" before throwing is ignored). Then there are the cubbies with the fake walls that come only up to a short person's neck. It is super easy to toss things to your neighbor, so watch out for the rubber bands and paper clips. They are popular choices in moments of boredom. If you need to get closer to your neighbor for assistance or a good secret, you just lean back and pedal your chair backwards a few feet. With the lack of privacy, you better learn to work with constant talking, because everyone can see everyone and no one can go anywhere unnoticed. So watch what you say and do. You will be laughed at.







I've had a few walls for a few weeks now and here's what I've learned about offices: There's not quite the constant talking and badgering of passerbys, people don't notice when you say something dumb - no one can hear, they don't notice that you walk into walls because they walls don't move. No one throws crap at you and you can have all the peace and quiet you want. When you get right down to it, this really makes me more of a cubicle kind of girl. I talk way too much for an office all to myself!

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