I love my job as a freelancer, I don’t have an office since I rather think of the entire world as my workplace. However some projects requier my presens at a regualr work place and eventhough I enjoy working in a team and having temporary colleges , there seems to be a curse that follows me around. I seem to have bad karma in terms of sitting.
It usually goes like this:
oh, you’re the interaction designer, welcome!
The office is huge and filled with desk from wall to wall. Behind every desk is a technician furiously hammering their keyboards. My contact person shakes my hand and then with just one sentences makes one thing clear: being the only usability expert in the room won’t give me any advantages.
Let’s see.. There’s a desk for you over there
He points the a dark corner of the office and returns to his seat, leaving me to see myself to the desk that seems to have been serving as an unloading space for quite some time. Empty boxes, used toner cartridges and other hunks of garbage crowned by at least three broken desk lamps.
The chair seem to have seen better days. I take a seat only to quickly rise again. I realize the chair is loose and under my weight it tilts slightly to the right. I can stabilize it with my body weight but if I so much as breath it shifts out of place. When I grab the armrest to move the chair closer to the desk, one of them falls right to the floor. apparently somebody has stuck it in place without bothering to reattach it properly. Somehow I do manage to get balanced and start putting my things in order next to the mess on the desk.
The chair is slightly to low and I fumble under it for the levers that controls the height. I pull the handle but seem to have grasped the one controlling the back instead and I am basically catapulted forward by the chair. I go through the numerous controls and find myself adjusting the chair in every conceivable direction except for the height. I must have pushed something because now I’m falling. The journey towards the center of the earth suddenly stops and I find myself sitting with my ears between my knees and all I can think is :
Why oh why?
Now, why is it so that at every office there’s a dysfunctional chair almost like in every family there’s a black sheep. If something breaks it’s much easier to make a rapid swap and hope that it goes by unnoticed rather than to get it fixed and the next person will surely do the same. In a matter of cause this means that the broken chair will end up at the empty desk if there is any. Giving any temporary inhabitants a warm welcome. The office chair from hell.