Friday, July 23, 2010

Coffee Mayhem

If you want to see an office full of nine-to-fivers go into sudden panic mode…break the communal coffee machine!  I learned this early Monday morning at my summer job working in marketing at a local bank. This internship has offered me amazing opportunities to write, produce training videos, and work on marketing projects, but the most valuable thing I’ve gained this summer has to do with understanding an important part of American Culture – The Office.
Although people arrive at the office around 7:57am to clock in… the real work does not start until much later. Emails must be laboriously checked, pencils, jackets and supplies arranged, evening events rehashed and of course a lengthy trip to the communal watering hole of poorly brewed caffeine must be made!
Our supercharged coffee brewer located in the office kitchen in the middle of the operations center serves as the heart of social gathering, procrastination, and obscene caffeine consumption. This beast of an appliance brews coffee continuously throughout the day quenching the insatiable thirst of an office full of caffeine -addicted employees.
This particular Monday morning, I arrived around 7:50am to widespread mayhem as people discovered that the jumbo sized coffee brewer (savior of tired working people everywhere) was broken. Panic calls were made to frantically rearrange meetings and organize Starbucks runs as everyone quickly realized that no work could possibly get done until this coffee shortage was remedied.
I reveled at the fact that one appliance glitch could so easily incapacitate a whole office full of talented people. As the ominous “Out of order” sign was taped on the coffee pot, I couldn’t help but laugh – never had I known or understood the great importance of that morning “Cup of Joe”, until now; but clearly I had underestimated its power.
A few hours later, as I sipped my steaming Vanilla latte delivered by a friendly coworker returning from her Starbucks rescue mission, it finally began to sink in – coffee really does fuels the office; the gasoline that keeps it running. Whether it’s your daily trip to the kitchen to share a friendly conversation and stir in your cream and sugar that keeps you going or the extra boost of caffeinated energy that helps you file that final stack of papers… coffee exists as a vital part of every office day!
Run out of fuel and your car will not budge – break the office coffee pot and well, you may as well call it a day.

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