Cubicle Neighbor Chronicles Part III

Editor’s note: This post was not written by the author of this blog. The author of this post has asked to remain anonymous on account of he/she does not want to lose his/her job. This is one post of many, however, because this person’s co-worker is kind of nuts.

Ok. Conversation between me and cubicle neighbor just a few minutes ago and let me just remind you, the woman uses a computer every single day now.

Cubicle neighbor: HI…. How do I sign up to use the conference room at a specific time for a meeting?
Me: Go to the shared drive and in the folder there is a “conference room calendar” in powerpoint and you just go to the day and write your name in and the time you want to reserve the room for. That way whenever someone else opens the document to see if it’s available they can see you’ve reserved it on a certain day and time.
Cubicle Neighbor: but how will they see it if I just change it on my computer?
Me: Um… well you save it and then anytime someone opens the document from the shared drive they’ll just see it…?
Cubicle Neighbor: What? Well… ok. How do i SAVE????
Me: Ummmmmmm…. hit “save”???
Cubicle Neighbor: Oh, just like, the save button in the top left?
Me: That would be the one!



Cubicle Neighbor Chronicles Part II

Editor’s note: This post was not written by the author of this blog. The author of this post has asked to remain anonymous on account of he/she does not want to lose his/her job. This is one post of many, however, because this person’s co-worker is kind of nuts.

Just taught cubicle neighbor how to create and type up tabs for binder dividers using Microsoft Word because she was convinced the only way to make tabs was to use the typewriter. So I sent her my template I use for when I have to put tabs in hundreds of folders. She thought I used a typewriter to do all that? Really?

Chalk one up for the 21st century!

Read part one here.

Cubicle Neighbor Chronicles Part I

Editor’s note: This post was not written by the author of this blog. The author of this post has asked to remain anonymous on account of he/she does not want to lose his/her job. This is likely the first post of many, however, because this person’s co-worker is kind of nuts.

So a few months after I started my current job, a “part-time” person was hired and given the cubicle right next to mine. I say “part-time” in quotations because I feel like she is here more than I am and I’m full time. I had heard all the horror stories about cubicles long before I ever got a real job but figured it couldn’t really be THAT bad. And it wasn’t, until “cubicle neighbor,” as I like to call her (or CN for short), started. I didn’t notice it at first, but slowly things began to catch my attention. Here is just a sampling of what I deal with on a regular basis.

– Her cell phone usage. The woman gets more personal phone calls while at work than anyone I have ever met. Usually it’s her dad or her kids. Mostly her kids. Who are teenagers. But they call her all day, every day. I will hear her talking with them at 10:30 on a Tuesday morning about anything and everything as I sit here and wonder, aren’t they in school? Some of the conversations I’ve overheard? Well let’s see. There was the time she was yelling at one of her kids for getting a ticket for going the wrong way on a one-way street. Another time she was yelling at one of her kids for putting his/her contacts in water because he/she was out of contact solution and so they ruined their contacts and had no extra pairs. Last week she was discussing spaghetti sauce recipes with someone.

My favorite thing she does with her cell phone? She will make about 4 or 5 phone calls and leave messages asking people to call her back, and proceed to immediately go into a meeting but leave her cell phone at her desk. And not on vibrate- no. Ringer ON. So when all of these people start calling back, her phone is ringing off the hook. One time it rang so much that I actually went in and interrupted the meeting she was in to tell her that her phone was ringing non- stop. I was hoping she’d get the hint that it was annoying the crap out of me and come silence it. Her response? “Oh it’s probably just my kids…. They’ll be ok.”

– Here is a copy of an email I sent to Laura about CN one day:
“I just walked from my desk to the copier to make a quick copy of something, and on my way to the copy area, I saw cubicle neighbor standing next to a bookshelf we have, with a huuuuuge PHONE BOOK in her hands, looking for a phone number. I have multiple problems with this.
1) It’s called the internet. You can find a phone number in a matter of 10 seconds or less using this cool thing they have now called GOOGLE. And if you don’t find it there, you can definitely find it on instead of wasting 20 minutes thumbing through a phone book with 500 + pages. 2) I’m pretty sure that phone book (and everything else on that book shelf) is from the early 90s. 3) It’s 2011.”

– CN uses a typewriter. An excerpt from another email to Laura: “So right now, the cubicle neighbor is not bugging me with the noise of her cell phone or desk phone or annoying laugh or questions about how to copy and paste something in a word document. She IS, however, bugging me with the sound of a typewriter. Yes. A typewriter. Two questions. 1) Why do we still have a typewriter in this office? B) What could anyone possibly need a typewriter for when they have a computer????????? Seriously. The sound of the typewriter is almost making me want to burst out laughing. I can’t get over the fact that she is actually using that right now.”

– And finally- the meanest of my rants about CN which I slightly regret but not really because come on, how can you not be annoyed by a woman who does all of these things as well as sits at her desk (when she’s not on her phone) just smiling to herself all day long. Another email to Laura:
“Sometimes when I listen to cubicle neighbor talk on the phone, I respond to things she says under my breath. I say what I would like to say to her out loud if I were the person on the other end of the phone.

Just now:

CN: “Well nothing’s ever straightforward for me! mra ha ha ha”
Me: “That’s because you’re retarded.”

Good God I’m mean. But I dare any one of you people reading this to sit in a cubicle next to this nonsense for a week straight and tell me you’re not going absolutely insane.

I was starting to worry that I’d have to testify…

It’s no secret that I am all about the old-time gangster lifestyle – three of my favorite movies are The Godfather, The Departed and Goodfellas. I watch COPS whenever it’s on – it’s what I’m watching right now, in fact. One of the only things I don’t like about my apartment’s cable plan is that we don’t have MSNBC, because I am fascinated by Lockup.

In my first apartment by myself out of college in the itty bitty town where my first reporting job was, I came fairly close to a real life crime, or so I thought. I lived in a house that had been converted into four different apartments. Above me was a 60-year old former cocaine dealer – found this out when I did a ride-along with the local cops one night – and across from him was a little old lady that looked like the old woman from The Wedding Singer, only with a bit of a drinking problem. One night someone from her apartment was taken to the hospital and I listened from downstairs to the conversation. She needed a ride to the hospital but told the EMT she couldn’t drive because she’d had a “little bit to drink.” Little bit, though, meant a CASE of Natty Ice and half a bottle of wine. Did I mention she was the exact replica, looks-wise of the Wedding Singer lady?

Across the hall, the people – a middle-aged couple – seemed normal, just loud. They’d slam the door at all hours of the night and I swear that woman vacuumed all day every day. They also went back and forth to the storage closet a lot. The closet was in the laundry room, which was right outside my apartment door. So, basically, the way the apartment was set up, I could hear and sometimes see, pretty much anything my neighbors were up to. Ew.

One night, I heard some especially loud noises around 1 a.m. in the laundry room and figured it was the neighbor from across the hall getting yet another thing out of the storage closet. I went to the peephole to see what was going on. Gimme a break, kids. There wasn’t much else to do, Internet was almost as slow as dial-up and everything in town closed by 8 p.m. A few minutes after I got to the door I saw the woman from across the hall come out of the laundry room cleaning a baseball bat. First odd thing, it was 1 A.M. Secondly, a BASEBALL BAT? Being that I watch several of the aforementioned crime shows and movies, my first thought was “This is not good.” After she was finished cleaning the bat, she turned the laundry room light out. And slowly, quietly – I kid you not – opened the door to her DARK APARTMENT with the bat behind her. Tell me that doesn’t sound like she was about to go kill her husband.

Turns out, I didn’t almost witness a murder, thank God. And until the other day, I thought that was the closest I’d come to possible involvement in a court case because my neighbor had been killed.

In the three months the roommate and I have lived in the new place, we’ve seen ONE of our five neighbors – above us, below us and across the hall. The one above us saw me the day I moved in and introduced himself and also came down the night of our Christmas party to basically say “SHUT UP AND STOP HAVING DANCE PARTIES ALREADY, IT’S 4:30 A.M. ON A SATURDAY, WHAT ARE YOU, PEOPLE WHO HAVE A LIFE?” to which I replied, “Do you want a beer?”

There’s allegedly a couple with a child across the hall from us, as Anthony’s bedroom backs up to said child’s crib and has heard the kid crying on many an occasion. The lady of the house may or may not look like Lindsay Lohan circa 2007, that’s all I could gather from the 0.94 milliseconds I saw her one day. We have no idea if they have jobs or do drugs or fight crime like superheroes while we sleep or have a large inheritance that allows them to just stay inside and have their groceries and clothes delivered and they just watch QVC all day. WE NEVER SEE THEM.

Apparently, though, they celebrate Christmas, because last week a Christmas tree was placed outside their door, I’m assuming to be disposed of. I say assuming, because five days later, it was still there, BLOCKING THE DOOR. So, do they step over it every time they leave and are hoping a big gust of wind will just throw it into the courtyard and it’ll look like storm damage? Or…thinking like anyone would who owns all the seasons of Dexter and watches American Justice and Cold Case Files and Law and Order on a regular basis…are they dead?

Now, that wasn’t my first thought, when the tree was blocking their front door for two days, or three days. Six days later though, when the thing hadn’t moved, we started to get suspicious. All of the sudden Anthony couldn’t remember the last time he’d heard a peep from the kid and we couldn’t see any lights on or hear anything. I even called the office and told them to check it out because we were a little concerned.

Let me explain though. Not only were we concerned for their general well-being – and didn’t want to have to be questioned by the cops as far as the last time we’d seen them, etc. – but as part of our rental agreement, we sign something that says if you leave trash outside your front door for longer than 12 hours you get fined. I’d say a dying tree counts as trash. And if they weren’t getting in trouble for that, then I’m gonna start setting our trash out there when it’s full instead of letting it stink up our entryway the whole night before we can take it out.

As of tonight at 4:30 when I left for church, the tree was still there. When I got back at 7, it was gone, but not without leaving a trail of debris from their front door all the way downstairs. So. Either they got in trouble, they finally had time to make a trash run or crime scene clean-up has begun and there’s gonna be some yellow caution tape up by tomorrow morning.

If this makes it on Law and Order, Anthony and I would like a say in who they cast to play us.