A word of warning to anyone contemplating working in a Korean office: it's just as annoying as working in any other place in Korea, perhaps moreso. I say this as a man with a very high threshold for annoyance. As proof, I submit that I've lived here for nine years and have yet to commit mass murder. Not as a non-lycanthrope, anyway.
But then you have One of Those Days; the perfect storm of irritability; a day that causes even the most mild-mannered man to nearly lose his shit.
Today was one of those days.
- I get into the office at 8:47 a.m. I'm the first person in. I turn on the heater to a reasonable 22 degrees Celsius. Minutes later, the secretary arrives and turns it down to 21. Because she's a cunt or because she was programmed that way, I cannot tell which. And maybe 21 would be fine if it weren't for the constant traffic coming in and out of the office, meaning TWO doors are open for approximately a third of the day. It's really comfy sitting at my desk in a goose down coat, but my typing fingers get pretty fucking numb. Blame my typos on frostbite, Mr. Manager. Ironically -- mark my word -- Koreans will successfully clone a human being before they discover a medium between ASS-NUMBINGLY COLD and BALL-FRYINGLY HOT vis a vis indoor air conditioning/heating.
- Shortly after 9:30, someone goes out to the balcony for a square. No harm there, except that when he comes back in he fails to properly close the door. It's minus 10 outside, but this cretin saunters over to his desk like the cold arm of winter isn't stabbing icicles into the hearts of all present...and maybe a few workers who called in sick. But he's a manager; why should he have to close the door he left open? A few minutes later, so as to save face, another manager remarks, "I guess the wind blew that there door open. Better close it," but not before bumping into my chair on her way to do so.
- I haven't counted the number of times various workers have bumped into my chair, but we're in double digits before noon. And, fuck me, I sort of get it. It's a cry for "skinship." Live here long enough and you actually start to get a warm, cozy feeling every time you bump into someone or something. In fact, the girl I mistakenly dry humped on the subway this afternoon actually looked thankful. Maybe her office is cold, too, and she appreciated the warmth.
- Listen; even if it's Gabriel's Oboe, cell phone ring tones are for assholes. Use vibrate, and keep your phone with you. Don't leave your phone at your desk and subject everyone else in the office to your shitty taste in music and shittier lack of manners. And certainly don't do it A MILLION FUCKING TIMES A DAY. That makes you Hitler. And who wants to be Hitler?
Assholes with ring tones who leave their phones on their desks, I guess.