I know that I've bitched about the urine/food on the bathroom floor at work before, and now my boss, Liz, reports a similar issue in her bathroom except it's not a peanut. I won't say exactly what it is that she's talking about for fear of grossing you all out, so let it suffice to say that she found A BLOODY GODDAMN TAMPON ON THE FLOOR. Anyway, that's not the point here. My point is that I'd like to go on record as saying that in general, the workplace environment in my office is really very pleasant.
In fact, today I invited my parents to come on in from the 'burbs and meet me for lunch in the big city. I thought maybe they'd like to see my office and see that their baby son has a Big Boy Job now. Both my parents are retired, but my mom did secretarial work in a New York office once upon a time, and my dad was an engineer for a Big Oil company for something like 40 years. They worked in hierarchical environments where people wore ties and had offices with doors.
So today I got to see my office from their perspective.
One of the first things they saw when they arrived was me meeting with Larry in our cafe area, while Larry carried his 2 month-old baby in a sling. My parents cooed over the baby and marveled at the fact that there was an infant allowed in the work place. After that, I took them on a quick tour, showing them some of the great art that is generously scattered through the building, when my mom noticed some toys on the ground. She asked if those were toys for the baby. I explained that those were dog toys for the several people who bring their dogs to work with them.
I introduced my prents to my ironic-tshirt-wearing co-workers and gave them a quick peek at the rooftop garden. I showed them the open work environment and the tasty free snacks in the kitchen. I pointed out the non-profits and foundations who share the space with us, and my parents probably noticed the diverse work force (not so much in my group, which is almost entirely composed of 40 year-old white males, but still).
In the end, it was a good reminder of what a fun and unique work environment I'm in. I realize that workplaces are generally much less uniform than they were during my parents careers, but I'm pretty sure my company is pushing the envelope a bit even in these modern times.
Now all we have to do is make some money, or at least convince more investors to give us more funding. My fingers are crossed. Toes too.