Kneumsi's Guide to Cubicle Living...


by J.C. Maçek III


Places of business have moved further and further away from the notion of a ridiculously private "office" environment to the much better "open air" or "cubicle" environment, which gives one the illusion of privacy (and allows all employees to hang up cute things on fiber walls) but still provides a venue for humiliation, overheard phone calls and spying by those both above and below you in the Departmental Tree. However, one thing that is not discussed often enough is just how much people enjoy having their personal space violated in favor of your convenience. In order to alleviate this issue, please refer to this list of suggestions below which will ensure that you will be fully entertaining and endearing to your coworkers in a cubicle environment.


  1. There is nothing more attractive than the sounds of gum being chewed and enjoyed. However, mere smacking doesn't always carry over all of the cubicles to echo against those on the other side of the building. Therefore, you need to learn to POP your gum as loudly as possible to approximate the stimulating sound of a bullwhip being cracked. This way your cubicle coworkers will know that you are really enjoying your gum and that you want to share your joy with them albeit vicariously. Don't worry… this is not irritating at ALL!

  2. When lunch break arrives, make sure you eat at your desk, not in the designated lunch areas. This goes especially for those of you who are NOT working through lunch. While this may be unsanitary, there is nothing more friendly than bringing forth the smells of food you have developed an "acquired taste" for into a cubicle environment. When a cubicle coworker smells the ancient Timbuktu recipe for aged duck eggs, he or she will most certainly know what they are missing. (Don't forget to eat loudly, suck your teeth and belch so that your cubicle coworkers will feel very good about the fact that you, whom they love, are enjoying your disgusting meal!)

  3. Remember that everyone in the entire company enjoys the exact same music that you do, and therefore you do not need to utilize headphones when enjoying your four hour block of commercial-interrupted Celene Dion songs from the "easy listening" station that you love so much. After all, if a radio station claims that they are the "listen at work station that everyone can enjoy" it has to be true! Radio stations are not known for self-aggrandizement or exaggeration. There is no need to turn these radios off when leaving for lunch or at the end of the day as the electricity they use is minimal. For maximum sharing potential, and to give your Cubicle Coworkers a choice, it would be good of you to have a friend sit across the department from you and play their own Spanish Language "listen at work station that everyone can enjoy" at an equal volume. You may not be able to hear each other's radios, but those seated dead center will be thrilled with the prospect of getting to hear both at the same time. Never forget that the only thing better than hearing the same six songs by Michael Bolton, Celine Dion, Bette Middler, the Dirty Dancing soundtrack, Rob Thomas and Atlantic Star repeated over and over again, separated only by audio commercials for the brain dead, is to experience the same thing in SPANISH! If we could only prop open the elevator and have that speaker cranked up we'd be in heaven!

  4. Your cubicle telephone has a "Speaker" feature for a reason. Should you find yourself on hold for any length of time, you should put the phone on the speaker so that all of your cubicle coworkers can learn how important your call is to your credit card company, your pharmacy or your gynecologist's office. Hold music is likewise a perfect addition to the dueling radios motif that is already being enjoyed throughout the office. Although it would be very simple to merely hold the phone to your ear, or even use a company provided head-set, imagine the loss your cubicle coworkers would feel if they were unable to hear both sides of an argument you are having with your mechanic? Lastly, should you be attempting to get through to a busy number, and must redial over and over again, be sure to use the speaker phone, preferably at a high decibel so that all your cubicle coworkers can dance to the sound of "EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH click beep droooooooooooooone do do di di da do di di de de di EEGH EEGH EEGH!"

  5. Speaking of phone usage, you spent good money on that cellular ring-tone, so be absolutely sure you turn your ringer UP so that everyone can hear it. Anything less would be a waste of your money, right? Further, leaving your phone at your desk while you take a relaxing walk is always a good decision. This way, if someone calls you your "me time" will not be interrupted, AND the added bonus of allowing your cubicle coworkers to hear your "Three Blind Mice" ring tone repeatedly can be thoroughly enjoyed! The fact that your phone has the feature of increasing its volume with each progressive ring to get your attention, then beep ever louder if a voicemail is left will add to the joy your cubicle coworkers are experiencing. In fact, this might just get the song "Three Blind Mice" stuck in their heads and they will then be thinking of you all day long! If you accidentally leave your cell phone on silent, do be sure that you have it on vibrate and on the hardest surface of your cubicle desk as you leave it behind. This will ensure that all the cubicles that are connected to yours in any way will also vibrate in a warm and sweet way. Don't worry about that missed call! You can always call that person back on the company's dime, AND use the SPEAKER PHONE to do it!

  6. Show your cubicle coworkers that you care by listening closely to the private conversations they have on their cubicle telephones. This way you will be involved in their life even if they irrationally choose NOT to use the speaker phone in the "open air". Nothing says "I'm thinking of you, buddy!" like the loud interrogative "DID YOU EVER FIND OUT IF IT REALLY WAS HERPES?"

  7. Show up unannounced at your cubicle coworkers' desks secure in the knowledge that you are so very important that they will drop everything to discuss minor business issues, or such major emergencies as your daughter's girl scout cookie sale, a question about whether or not someone they've never heard of did a job they know nothing about, or of course the loud interrogative "DID YOU EVER FIND OUT IF IT REALLY WAS HERPES?" It is especially friendly to follow up any emails you receive from a cubicle coworker with a verbal visit. If your cubicle coworker is on the telephone or is otherwise indisposed, please either interrupt that person, or be friendly enough to pace back and forth behind them, checking your watch and sighing loudly, and possibly popping some gum. Remember, you are the only person who is REALLY busy.

  8. Save your cubicle coworkers money by loudly discussing the surprise twist endings to current box office hits. When they hear that "he was a ghost", "she was a guy" or "the kid dies in the end" they will have no further need to attend the movies, and they might even be given the unique opportunity to put in more hours at work with you!

  9. While you can (and do) look into everyone's cubicle as you walk by or just peer over the mini-wall, there is a secret barrier that can only be seen and passed through by you personally set up specifically for you by the wizard Mordru! Therefore, feel free to stand up, stretch, pull the underwear wad out of your crack, fart and play solitaire. No one will know.

  10. A nominal amount of light is produced from computer monitors, therefore your cubicle coworkers don't REALLY need the florescent floods in the suspended ceiling, do they? Save the company some bucks on their energy bill by turning those lights off when you leave the floor. This could turn in to a raise for you!

  11. When meeting another of your coworkers when walking through the "cubicle farm", it is highly appropriate to discuss anything that strikes you right then and there so that neither of you will be required to alter course. However, let's not be rude. We must keep those lanes of traffic open and passable. Therefore, both of you should step into the nearest cubicle to be fully out of the way. You should really squeeze in to have this conversation (don't worry, the cubicle coworker who is actually in that cubicle will quickly squeeze forward to make room for you). Also, please pay no mind to anatomy. Your ass does not stink, so your cubicle coworker will not mind it practically resting on his or her shoulder one bit.

  12. You are a valued employee, and you want to save up your sick days for a time in which you would prefer to stay home with Oprah Winfrey and Fred Flintstone. Therefore it's a good idea to come into work even when sick and share your presence with everyone within your cubicle environment. You can also gain plenty of Sympathy Points by sneezing, coughing and blowing your nose as loudly as possible. Remember, you are LOVED! There will be no question in your mind that when everyone else comes down with your same symptoms that it is purely coincidental.

  13. If too busy to pay an unannounced visit to a coworker at his or her desk (which you know they love), you should still feel free to forgo email or telephone contact and simply call to them over the cubicle walls, regardless of distance. Start by asking if they are there, then repeat this with a more sing-song tone to the voice, and then again slightly angrier. While no response is more than likely evidence of absence, you won't know that until you do receive a positive or a negative answer to your inquiry. Also please note that the opposite is true for when you are talking about a cubicle coworker behind their backs. They can hear you wherever they are should you wish them to, however, should you deign that they not hear you it will be impossible for them to, unless you're simply trying to prove a point without speaking to one's face. All this is made possible by the powers of the wizard Mordru.

  14. To best personalize your computer, make sure you activate Wave Sounds for each and every Windows action that takes place. This makes a perfect compliment to your speaker phone, ring tones and radio that you are already sharing with the population of your open air office space. How else will everyone in the whole place know when you receive an email, send an AIM message or click on the start menu? If someone else is being rude enough to use Wave Sounds, radios without headphones, speaker phones or ring tones, make sure you turn yours up loudest because you have better taste and it's okay when you do it.

  15. Because everyone loves the same music you do, it's important to complain about anyone else who might be playing music that doesn't fit your vibe. After all, you're kind enough to crank yours up, and your music is actually good. Why would they ever need to play theirs?

  16. There are occasions in which some music simply must be accompanied for maximum pleasure of you and those around you. Those who only hum or mumble lyrics under their breath don't truly get to experience the joy and harmonious cacophany that you do when you whistle along at the highest decible possible. It's important, especially when you've amplified your music for everyone's enjoyment, to whistle quite loudly so that you too can be heard. It shouldn't be too long before your appreciative coworkers actually start making requests, so pucker up and get ready to blow! If those rude people who don't realize the musical orgasm that your whistling truly is would dare complain, remember this: If you whistle at a high enough pitch, the whistling becomes even more shrill and grating, although it's undeniably quieter to the human ear. Those mean people who don't LOVE your lip-wind will soon find their eyes watering and their ears twitching. Meanwhile dogs all around the city will begin barking along with you... and as your desk calendar so emphatically proves, you're most definitely a "Dog Person"!

  17. Decorate your cubicle in the most personalized fashions possible up to and including your own religious preferences (it's okay because YOUR religion is the RIGHT one). Also because not everyone will be able to see all your great decorations (Mordru), it's a cool idea to create something that they can enjoy without their eyes. I think you hear me knockin' and I think you know what I'm suggesting: POTPOURRI! That's right, especially the kind that you can boil at your desk. You'll be gone for the day before it starts burning anyway.

  18. When something is funny make sure the entire building (not just YOUR company, department or cubicle farm) can hear how enchanting your laugh really is. This will also help them to vicariously share in your happiness because everyone loves you, you minx, you!

  19. The Bathroom is an excellent place to have a telephone conversation, or a friendly discussion with the person sitting in the stall next to you. Please do have some happy discussion while on the potty either using the phone or the loudness of your voice. Those stalls are indeed KIND of like Cubicles, so the same rules must apply, yes?

  20. If you speak a language other than that commonly spoken in your open air office, be kind and sharing with your cubicle coworkers and speak it as loudly as possible. The best way for them to learn a new language is by emersion. There's no question that they will WANT to learn it. Trust me, when the only thing they understand is their name followed by raucous laughter they'll start learning REAL quick.

  21. If you speak only the one language, eliminate the disparity by loudly talking baby talk to your children or spouse.

J.C. Maçek III cares about you and your "Second Home".
This ANGRY parody was created for your Cubicle Well Being!
Just yours, no one else's!
Good day, and God Bless!

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