For the first few weeks at a new job, I’ll be the quietest employee around and no one will know a thing about me. Essentially, I’ll creep everyone out with my quietness. Bottom line: I’ll be invisible, and a mute. If someone talks to me, or asks me a question, I won’t answer back. I’ll pretend that they’re not there, beside me, as if I’m not there myself, like they imagined me, and they’re a crazy person, imagining employees in the office that aren’t even there. And I’ll be giggling, on the inside.
Two weeks will go by, and that’s when I’ll start to stand by the water cooler for a few minutes a day, offering bits of conversation, like what was on television the night before. After a week or so, I’ll begin to offer more television information, such as what’s on tonight, what to watch out for, and what’s going to be a rerun. Then, after a day or so, I’ll stand by the water cooler for a few hours at a time, offering plot recaps, plot spoilers and cast member contract negotiation details. By the time I’ve been given a verbal warning the following week, I’ve moved my cubicle up to the water cooler, held contests such as Most Memorable Pat Sajak tie patterns, and have re-enacted the previous evening’s entire prime-time schedule, playing all the characters, with commercials intact.