I was excited to get a new hire and find a location for him to sit. Right outside of my office was this beautiful empty cubicle—his new home, I thought. The cube had been empty for months, it was a perfect spot. My excitement was building, until I saw the black and white sign, mocking me in 72 point Calibri:
Right in front of my own eyes, the office equivalent of stretching across 5 folding chairs.
After searching around, I discovered that someone had placed this sign and reserved this spot for an open and not yet filled position months ago.
When you come from a big family, the concept of reserving or saving things is foreign. Take food, for example. If dinner is on the table, and you’re late, then you just don’t get the good stuff.
“Show up on time,” my mother used to say when I showed up late and the only dinner portions left was a copious portion of red beets.
This theme is all around us. You ever been to a parade and see those empty chairs you’d take to a kid’s soccer game just lined up in the front row? They put them there days in advance. Deep inside the recesses of my mind I wish someone would steal them.
How about at a school play? It’s like someone raided the lost and found table hanging a bunch of tattered coats, hats and scarves across a bunch of folding chairs. At least have the dignity to just make your kid lie down across the chairs…
I wonder what this says about our culture. Do we respect showing up on time? Are we trying to protect those in our clan that are just a little slower than the rest of us?
Sometimes, we all just need to experience eating the beets, teaching us to show up next time just a little earlier.
What’s your favorite “saver” story?
One of my favorite “saver” examples: In the winter Philly is pretty famous for “saving parking spots”. Philly has some pretty narrow streets and often the plows either can’t or don’t get out for quite some time after heavy snow storms. Therefore people “create” their own parking spot by spending +2 hours to remove all the snow. They’ll then use lawn chairs, cones, 5 gallon buckets etc… to “save” their “created” parking spot.
5th Grade Band Concert – one parent volunteered to arrive early to help set up chairs, then proceeded to empty her purse onto the first two rows. I attempted to displace a tube of carmex for a spot in the 2nd row but was quickly made to regret it!