Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Workplace Hazards

When starting a new job, it's common to be asked to read and sign off on a Policy and Procedure manual. Some are more lengthy and involved than others, but this is generally part of any new employee orientation. When I worked at a wilderness-based residential treatment center helping youth build log cabins, the policies and safety guidelines could have filled a small library. It was probably reasonable to expect that if I accidentally cut my foot off with a chain saw one day, they'd want to pull out the signed piece of paper to say "She was warned!!! We tried our best!!!"

Now that I work at a desk, the workplace hazards I'm supposed to recognize and avoid are less extreme (think eyestrain and carpal tunnel). But never in my policy and procedure history have I seen any mention of the workplace hazard I now find myself contending with. 

You see, I've recently moved to a home office. I've worked from home in the past, and there are pros and cons. Personally, I prefer working in an office setting, but this is going to save me a small fortune in gas. My office was an hour away from my house, and I was driving there 3-4 times a week. So I've been rearranging furniture, shopping for supplies and moving files for a month, and now aside from a few remaining needs, I've got my little home office all set up.

(isn't it cute??)
It's just about perfect, except for the unfortunate fact of Lucy's litter box being right across the stairwell in the laundry room. And that in and of itself wouldn't be so bad, because every effort is made to keep it clean. But it's the strangest thing - I've noticed that when I go downstairs, turn everything on and get to work, Lucy takes it as some sort of sign do I put this delicately?... 'take care of business.' 

It's almost as if she figures I'm taking care of business, so she might as well too. But it creates a quite toxic work environment. I recently learned that my organization provides a one-time home office "allowance" that home-based employees can spend on supplies. Perhaps my first purchase should be a gas mask??


  1. I love Lucy. :). And congrats on working from home!

  2. Your cat is gorgeous! Sorry to hear about the smell in your home office.. but when one has to go, they have to go. ;-)

  3. Sometimes I envy people who work at home, but then I realize how non-productive I would be. I'm always distracted by the dogs...I actually have to go to the gym each morning because it takes me much longer to get dressed and leave from home because I'm always distracted by the pooches.

  4. Lucy is simply working on getting "employee of the month" status :-D
    I would trade 100 stinky litter box visits for the chance to work from home and avoid workplace drama and ugliness. Matt is working from home now and I admittedly feel sorry for him because his work never seems to end.
    Your office looks perfect to me!!

  5. Hahahhahahahaha!!!!!! Lucy! So cute! Tiger WAITS for mom to clean the litter box, THEN he goes!

  6. You see!!!! I keep warning you all about cats. They give you the evil eye and they make bad smells.

    WHAT DO YOU MEAN I DO TOO, LOTH???? I told you that's NOT me causing those smells in the evening when I'm relaxing in front of the television. You can't prove it. I'm admitting nothing.

    Love and licks Winnie (I'm hurt. Really hurt that you doubt me)

  7. What a stinky co-worker! :)

    I like your home office, very nice. I wish I could work from home. But I probably would not get anything done.

    I am so glad your cat loving friends enjoyed Corbie's rescue story. She was such a lovely little cat (somewhere between 4-6 months old we guess) and she reached out to us as well. She got very very lucky to find such a great home with Tami! My sister told Tami that if it did not work out she would take Corbie back. Lovely sweet little soul.

  8. Brenda, your home office is very nice and your chair looks so comfortable! Looks you also have a beautiful view from your window.

    Ahahah! Lucy is so cute!