I have always been a devoted fan of the NBC series The Office. If you are a fan too, you understand the joke in the headline of this post.
This tv show is based on a British version of the same name, and the first few episodes of the first season of each are very similar. After that the plots diverge a bit although the setting, a typical open concept office featuring office workers pushing paper around, answering phones and occasionally making sales remains the same. The universality of working in an office is relatable for every white collar worker in the world. Across cultures and time, there are constants that remain in place: dull/unflattering overhead lighting; people who look bored and uninspired most of the time, and the sounds of telephones ringing, keyboard strokes, photocopiers, paper shuffling, and general room buzz are all there to remind you of your 200 hours per week you put in there in exchange for pay and other benefits (pensions, health coverage, paid lunch breaks and a boss who occasionally inspires you but mostly depresses you with his or her inside knowledge of how the company is doing and what direction the company is taking next).
The reality for me is, I paid a lot to go to school (money + time, thank you very much) so that I could sit on my butt in an office setting. Admittedly my job is easy, my friends there are great, and I mostly love my routine. I spend most of my work day reading and writing, which for me is ideal.
But does office decor have to be so drab? Why, in fact, is it always grey, beige and dull, no matter how much natural light there is? Apple was onto something when they had designed the colourful e-Macs, although I think the target market was for those who wanted a home computer. I see those e-Macs for sale on Etsy these days, although the guts of them have been ripped out and replaced by a colourful pillow so that their shells can be used as beds for small pets. And babies? Hmm, that would be freaking cool. Why does parenthood have to come with garishly c0loured molded plastic everything? I understand kids like those colours, but I doubt babies really care at all if their playpen is turquoise, pink, purple AND black. Who in the world has living room furniture that would match that scheme? I’m getting off topic here but the idea remains the same – we as a society need some industrial designers who can take cube life and parenthood to the next level (or any level!) of cool, and not just for the rich/artsy executive class. Middle and lower class people need cheerful stylish environments too.
You’re welcome, future entrepreneurs!