Office antics. Anyone who’s ever worked in this type of professional setting has surely encountered coworker quirks and learned how to live with them. If not, sorry to say, but perhaps you’re the quirky one?

The Aitkin Independent Age sure has its fair share of  zany characters. I think you have to be a little peculiar to work for a newspaper. It’s even listed somewhere in the job description.

Usually, these clues toward each of our oddities are tucked away within our personal work spaces, whether it be in our offices, cubicles or desks. Little things like a two-week collection of moldy coffee mugs (guilty), or potting soil in the filing cabinet to care for a sad-looking spider plant.

That being said, there must be a set of ground rules established for the community office spaces, such as in the restrooms. For example, in an office dominated by women, the male minority must learn to leave the toilet seat in the downward position if he wishes to escape a painfully awkward conversation.

Breakrooms are another shared space where office etiquette is required. We can all expect to wash our own dishes and wipe up our crumbs off the counters. Fair enough.

Sometimes the lines are a little blurred when it comes to sharing. Most days, a coworker will bring something to share with the rest of the group. Whether it be fresh picked raspberries from their garden, leftover pulled pork from a family get together, or pastries from the bake sale down the street –all are fair game so long as you leave enough for the next person.

One day as I was making my morning oatmeal, I searched around for the glass measuring cup, which seemed to have disappeared. Asking around, it seems the cup was hidden by its owner who noticed it was being used for something other than her morning coffee. My bad.

That day, I also noticed my chips for lunches were disappearing. I had my suspicions, but was surprised to find the real culprit, putting my detective skills to shame.

When another person’s ice went missing, I zipped my lips because, hey, we’re all guilty some days. The thief usually gives themselves away by treating the group soon after. That’s all I’m going to say...

Brielle Bredsten is the editor of the Aitkin Independent Age.

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