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Home > Blog > What I look like I'm doing
Out of Our Minds
Wednesday, May 12, 2004 8:36 AM
What I look like I'm doing
David Weinberger on At Home

My office is right off the TV room, um, I mean the family room, and I have no door, so my children are aware of my presence throughout the day. I sometimes wonder what they think my worklife is like, based on what they see me do.

Apparently, worklife means clicking on a keyboard for 10-14 hours a day. There are occasional phone calls, but the ones my kids see tend to be the multi-hour gabfests when I get tired of checking my email and wander around the house in shorts and a headset.

Work also apparently means going on frequent one- or two-day trips that are so boring that there's nothing to tell about when I get home: 'I watched TV in a cheap hotel, had a high-cholesterol breakfast, and then sat in a meeting for six hours. Wanna see the photos?'

In return for this, I make just enough money to keep within swearing distance of our bills.

Hmm, sounds like a pretty grim picture of working. On the other hand, it beats the view of worklife I got from my father when I was growing up according to which work consisted of commuting an hour each way in to a black box in The City, coming home, and griping about what a crappy day he had.

(From my mother, who taught folk guitar, I learned that working could be doing something you love, but, then, in the '50s and '60s, that didn't count as 'really' working.)


4 comments

lee wilder - 6/4/2004 1:41:11 PM
So, do we think that all of the suits in a two hour meeting are 'hard at work?' I think a corporate structure supplies enough resources and outlets that often work can be easier. When you are the marketing team, the administrative support team and the worker bee -- well, it is hard. but, no complaints.
Scott Allen - 5/22/2004 2:48:53 PM
Just a vote of empathy... I actually like to take my gabfests waist-deep in my pool, though. At least I FEEL like I have more choices.
bw - 5/13/2004 6:33:15 AM
i've gotten used to the griping over the crappy day routine myself--kind of a defensive fatalism in a dumber and dumber world.
Kevin - 5/12/2004 10:31:55 AM
The irony of the image of the 'hard worker' is that in order to look good, you need to always be in motion -- and probably never do any real thinking. Oftentimes, my best thoughts come when I'm far from my desk, walking my dogs or browsing through a bookstore. But I'm certain my neighbors think I'm a lazy slob when I do those things at, say, 11 a.m. or 2 in the afternoon.

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