What is this place?

For two days I have shown up for work somewhere entirely foreign and sat down at a cubicle, opened up my lock-box and looked inside to make sure my stapler, staples, 3 blue pens, roll of tape and one paper-clip are still there. I do not have a tape dispenser for my roll of tape. The girl next to me has staples, but no stapler. She also got a wooden card holder in the shape of a duck. She shares the tape dispenser, and I share the stapler.

In training this week, our trainer gave us Legos to play with, recognizing people pay more attention when our hands are occupied. The first day, I built a Lego landscape with green grass and a blue sky, and the word “hi” spelled out in yellow Legos right in the middle. I also created a bumblebee, a striped sock, and a candy-cane. She was right. My hands were occupied and my brain was free to listen.

The second day, I built a house, an apple, a striped garage, a syringe, and a checklist to demonstrate her speaking points. But today, I left the Legos alone, and drew a family on a piece of scrap paper she had placed in the middle of the table for our use, along with markers.

In the middle of the lesson, she said, “Brooke, if you have something you need to work on, just go ahead and go.” I looked up confused, and turned toward everyone else who was staring at me awkwardly.

“Im paying attention,” I said, “I’m just drawing.” I held up a piece of paper that said ‘strengthening families’ in block letters and the family I had drawn.

“Well,” she said. “It looks like you are doing something else.”

I put the paper down and tried my best to pay attention in the traditional Lego way until lunch. I was trying really hard not to cry. It was a good looking family.

At lunch, I went home and laid on my couch. I did not want to go back to the training. It felt like a hostile place to be, where trainers yell at you and hand-drawn families are not welcome. But I went back anyway an hour later and built a living room out of Legos. It had a TV, two couches, two recliners, a bookshelf, two lamps and a piano complete with sheet music. The trainer beamed.

Okay, WHAT?!

I can build an entire Lego community over a span of 3 days, but if I draw on a piece of scrap paper, I have to leave? Also, one paperclip?

I need someone to catch this drift.


7 thoughts on “What is this place?”

  1. ewwwwwwww. i hate it when people play it like they’re cool, and then they act like you’re so outta line when you relax. they should have been black and white. strict or not. and give my friend a freakin tape dispenser for gosh sakes!

    you should talk to helen. she’d be able to talk about your new job and understand!


  2. You may have trouble with it now, but remember what you had to put up with before. You keep drawing that family and one day you can tell them to put down the legos and pay attention. Always here to help, and if you want a tape dispenser take it from the person that has the other half a cubicle, then take their half so you have the whole cube to yourself :)


  3. the thing is, the person next to me has staples, but no stapler. she also got a wooden card holder in the shape of a duck. so anyway, she shares the tape dispenser, and I share the stapler.


  4. i’ll be on the next flight out of here.

    ok, sorry. i gotta a little lost in the heat of the moment. i can’t get on the next flight, but i promise to answer the phone. i also promise to send the $10, so i can possibly win $5,000. AND if i win, i will be flying you out here to visit for the weekend and then flying myself out to visit you for a weekend, and then flying both of us to visit elaine…and there i go again in that heat of the moment. anyway, at the very least i’ll answer the phone.


    ps. please take a picture of your landscape so i can see it. i really want to see it!


  5. So, today I built a McDonalds sign out of legos (it looked awesome, everyone agreed) and a dog chasing a kid up a tree– that one was a challenge build from another trainee. I successfuly completed her challenge, and thew in a dog house, an american flag, and a flower garden as well.


  6. first of all, i’m sorry to hear about the workplace stress…sounds very frustrating.

    secondly, you should go into the business of lego art professionally. because it sounds like you are building some killer sculptures. i’d buy them, seriously i would!

    third of all, it was SO good to see you last week….i mean it.


  7. PS, you guys. I really do like the new job and I think it’s going to be a great experience for me. Its just hard being new


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