Our firm is being recarpeted. Somewhere, someone decided that our old, bland office carpeting needs to be replaced by new, bland office carpeting. It’s being done overnight, office by office and floor by floor.
This means that all of the furniture in each office must be moved out so new carpet can be laid down. More importantly — from the standpoint of the officeholder, anyway — it also means that every book, picture frame, desk toy, and scrap of paper that has been resting comfortably atop every desk, credenza, chair, and table also must be moved out. Last night was my recarpeting night, so I’ve been in the box-up zone for the last few days.
A few observations from this experience: First, dust is an amazing thing. Once you start exposing hard-to-reach areas, you realize how much dust there is in the world. Where does it come from? If we didn’t have a nightly cleaning crew, everything in my office would be covered by an inches-thick layer of dust.
Second, how much of the stuff in your office do you even use? I have shelves and a credenza lined with books. In the pack-up period, I saw books, like my law books from school, that were dust-covered and adhered to each other, cover to cover, because they hadn’t been moved or opened in years. I obviously don’t need them and — unlike photos of Kish and the boys — they don’t add much to the office atmosphere. They once seemed solid and impressive with their solemn, thick covers; now it seems silly to keep them around.
In short, you don’t realize how much debris you’ve accumulated until you have to move it — and then you wonder why in the world you have it in the first place.