Working life for the most of us is very different than it was for our parents (or their parents). Can you imagine the likely Facebook status updates of our forebears?
“ZOMG. Arm caught in thresher. Will have to learn to twist chicken necks left-handed, now.” (Hey, I’m left handed already Christian, what are you trying to say?) [Jeff’s comment] (That you’re a freak of nature, maybe? [Christian’s riposte])
“Practical jokes involving banana peels and high rise construction sites best avoided. I guess I’ll be looking for new partner.”
Many of us desk jockeys spend our days doing battle with that great workplace threat of 21st century, carpal tunnel syndrome, eyestrain and their attendant maladies. Yes, things are better in many respects, but that doesn’t mean that our work places always equip up adequately for the tasks with which they charge us. We must look out for available resources should some need present itself.
My office outfits a lot of its staff with laptops. I’m one of the lucky ones, being in a more “creative” field, and get to use a MacBook Pro. These work well for portable computing, allowing many of us to actually get work done during meetings and on the road–critical email checking, for instance, or live tweeting of our witty asides about a co-worker’s misguiding suggestions during a brainstorming session. (I am not sure I would classify live tweeting as “critical”) [Jeff can be so cynical]
A laptop works less well for me as a full-time computer, at least at its normal height on a desk. The screen is just too low for comfort. The distance of the screen also seems to create some discomfort. In any case, I just had to find some way to elevate the MacBook Pro.
Because computers are everywhere, mail trays have found themselves relegated to storage closets. We don’t need memos, after all, at least not in their printed form. Email rules the communications channels in most places. As it turns out, those mail trays have not yet begun to go obsolete. [What about TPS Reports? As long as TPS reports need printed and filed, there will always be life for the mail tray. Jeff is now optimistic, and not cynical] Just as one turns a frown upside down to make an upside down frown cake (at least that sounds right), turning the mail tray upside down makes for a very adequate laptop stand. Because they stack, two such trays, and I’m giddy as a schoolboy.
This way, I can keep my computer where I want it and hide away treats for afternoon secret eating.
(Bonus tip: wooden mail trays can work for heavy duty CRT monitors that some other department might be otherwise discarding. Go mail trays.)
So don’t be afraid to head to forgotten storage areas at work to look for your own repurposing gold mine. Your boss will reward your resourcefulness handsomely: maybe with a Successories poster.