I sometimes think our office can be a good candidate for Office Survivor. The characters and things happening here can feed a “reality” TV script for days… The first day I arrived here I was told that we are only allowed to have three cups of coffee or tea. No more, né? I felt like I was back in primary school. You can only have one cookie, hey? And no more or else you have to stand in the naughty corner.

One of the first things that intrigued me was a lonesome rooibos teabag left on a saucer with a spoon close to it. It appeared every second day or so, why would anyone want to save the teabag? And why would you want to use it again? Look, I heard of stories of people hanging teabags on the washing line, but I always figured this was an urban legend. Not so where I work.
Apparently someone saves the teabags to re-use them…Urgh! This is also the person that eats oats for lunch, so let’s not go there.

The bathroom is a minefield of no-nos at the office. It’s simple really. We, the women in the office – about ten or so – share the bathroom and thus there is a lot more traffic into the bathroom than the one at your house. So, leave the window open… please man.

Look, you can spray that lavender air-freshner until you are as blue as the blikkie it comes in, but at the end of the day high traffic, small space and we know what happens there so please, I’m begging you, leave the window open. Like toilet seat down at your house, windows open at work.

Which brings me to the toilet roll holder.

If it’s empty, take off empty one, place in bin provided, replace with a new roll. Simple? Yes.

Not so here at Island Madness no, rather than do this easy three steps, leave the empty one on the older roll thingy and place the new toilet roll on top of it… Yep, it makes much more sense. Also, and this might be crude. But Oasis sings about ‘don’t look back in anger’ well – do look back and prevent the next person using the loo in anger. Just saying.

Over-sharing at the office is another coin in my pet peeves piggy bank. I mean, when I ask how you are feeling after your recent illness, I don’t want a 20-minute discussion on how hard it was for you to go to the loo and how your tummy made funny noises and how you still can’t eat beetroot for fear of not making it to the loo in time. Question: How are you feeling today? Answer: Much better, thanks for asking. Done, dusted, walk away.

The same applies to the colour of babies poo, stitches that went red and itchy (and showing me said stitches), hubby’s snip-snip operation. I am not insensitive to the plight of others, but don’t put me off asking after your wellbeing.  I really want to know, but save the details for the GP.

The best one was when this one woman told me about the ingrown hairs on her ka-dunk-ka-dunk. Not the back – the front! I was left speechless. I mean, come on… really?

I also love the e-mails that are sent to everyone: “The fridge in the kitchen will self-destruct in ten minutes. So please remove any rooibos teabags if you value them.”

Ten minutes later another email: “The fridge is now dead. If you would like to attend the funeral, please email the boss.”

Sometimes it’s real duh moments. Yes, I can see the microwave is gone. So sending me a mail to tell me it’s gone to appliance heaven or the spa for faulty appliances is really dof. Some of the mails are quite useful, but I often giggle at the absurdness of some of them.

Does your office also have strange idiosyncrasies? 

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