One Hundred Hours of Solitude

Salsa coma.

I work from home, which means I have a lot of…freedom [shudder]. Horrible, limitless, malaise-inducing freedom. For instance, my current outfit consists of boxer briefs and slippers, I just ate a bunch of salsa straight from the jar, and in about five minutes I’m going to lie face-down on my bed as a reward for writing this. All kidding aside, I will say that working from home does have its perks. I mean, the break room is the size of my apartment! Also, I can eat unlimited quantities of salsa, guilt-free, which is a nice change of pace for – oh, who am I kidding?! I hate freedom! It sucks! How I long for the halcyon days of Orwellian office oppression (c-c-c-combo!). Back when procrastination was a punishable offense, and coffee was used as a chemical motivator, and I actually had to wear pants! Sweet, sweet tyranny! Where have ye gone, mine ornery horn’ed muse? Why, I can remember how I wasn’t even allowed to go on Facebook! Can you imagine?! No Facebook! Actually, that reminds me… [opens browser, checks Facebook, closes browser, reflexively opens browser, checks Facebook again, closes browser]. What was I talking about? Cats? Well, Wife and I have this cat, named Cat, and let me tell you, he is one feisty feline!

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208 thoughts on “One Hundred Hours of Solitude

  1. I know exactly what you mean. For me, too much freedom just makes me procrastinate. If i do get distracted its just seasons after seasons (series) until i could finish the task.

  2. I can relate to your solitude conundrum! This post makes me want to follow your blog because it’s so hilarious, but I’m having a lot of trouble clicking, “change my life.” Does it hafta sound so domineering, Anthony Robbins-esque, and self-helpy?

  3. Feed salsa to cat. See what happens. Please let me know what happens. I have a cat who meows and moans excessively as well. A complete scream off every morning. Will salsa ease this?

  4. I always loved the nomadic, romantic idea of working at home, liberated from the shackles of one’s desk and Blackberry. I used to be a freelance journalist and found that I would be distracted by too many things at home. I much rather preferred writing from different locations, away from my apartment, treating each one like a new office. Sigh. I miss it!

  5. Friends, thank you for all the wonderful comments. If only there was a way to send each and every one of you a jar of salsa!

  6. I think I would kill myself from boredom if I had to work from home. If I take time off from work, I get bored enough to want to go back after a week or two. My sympathies for your dilemma … which is sweet on the days that I end up working 20+ hrs straight :)

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  9. Solitude…funny its when you have things to do that you want the freedom of working from home or even for yourslef..but soon that human instinct to interact gets too strong. Man is a social creature and all hail that! Love it. Peace

  10. I was fortunate enough to be able to work from home for most of the last 6 years (I was the only person in my department who was actually in my city — my coworkers were scattered around the country and a few were even in India). I found that the important thing is establishing a routine that included actually GETTING DRESSED, some breakfast and a quick scan of the servers I supported to see if they needed any immediate attention. That didn’t mean that I didn’t get distracted, but things like conference call meetings and customer calls would snap me back to business.

    Now I’m retired and my JOB is to goof off. Don’t hate me … (Honey, could you bring me another jar of salsa? I’m on level 26 and can’t pause the game right here.)

  11. I am an intern, and currently our boss has stepped out of the office for a “Monday” – really it’s Tuesday because of the holiday – meeting. I am checking blogs, and hitting up facebook a ton! However, If he was gone all the time, and I was in your situation I can’t tell if i’d get anything done…

    oh the life of an intern – scanning away…

  12. This is right. I shuddwer to think what we would be like with out the interweb thingie. A good old card system and paper diary and god forbid, meeting people in person. The only upside is being able to get as much tv viewing as its possiblee to get and view in a single day. No more boredom! And now my shiny new Toshoba DX1210 allinone is big enough to watcch movies on and actually see wnhat’s going on. If I wasn’t so cheap I would go rent aa bluray to play on the drivee, but I haven’t used CD’s or DVD’s in years. Sigh…. I long for the days of pencil sharpeners and paper envelopes.

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  14. Applause! What a wonderful post.

    I work from home. I have for about 11 years. I love it. I am far more productive. I hate office politics though at my level I cannot totally avoid it.
    :)

  15. Seriously my friend, you have to force yourself to get dresses for business in the morning. Working in slippers and boxers is no way to “feel” professional, and it clearly is having an impact on your psyche.

    If you get up in the morning with purpose and dress as if meeting potential clients that day, then you can enjoy the benefits of working at home (choosing hours and enjoying leisure time) more fully.

    If you’re still in boxers, you aren’t really ready to begin the day, are you?

    I for one am still working for that day when I can work from home full-time. I hope you can make a more fulfilling / happier lifestyle out of your chosen direction.

  16. As a Realtor I work from home and the office…best of both worlds! I think either you are ready to work or you are not. At home I have distractions (TV, sleeping, eating, facebook, etc) and at work I also have distractions (gossip, having to help others, stupid questions, etc.) Either way I need to be ready to work to get anything done….so hard to do!
    Good Luck! :-)
    Love the blog!

  17. For my case, it is the opposite .. whenever I work from home, my productivity increases simply because there is less disturbances, less tea-coffee breaks :-)

  18. i find keeping oneself busy at home a big challenge. but you do have to take the good w/ the bad. btw, as a whim, i named my cat supercat. so far my manufactured hero has failed me – hahaha!

  19. For the past three years I have been planning to work at home, but at the end of each year I found out that one thing or the other is missing from the tools I need to start working at home. The matter is made worse by my spouse who belives that office work gives more prestige. she believes that people will think that one is at home lazing around. I also think of the friends we make on our 9am to 5pm office work, am determined to call it quits this time around and be free from office politics and bullies from my big boss. It wouldn’t matter if I wear a boxer or a sandal, I am going to start working at home and enjoy my freedom; what do you think.

  20. I can’t work from home because of Facebook. Actually, Facebook ate my whole life and career since 2 years. We could work very well if those websites wouldn’t exist, I think. But still, a little nap can steal a little time ;)

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  22. Well said. What if we create a bit of the office routine and decipline in our office at home? Even go out for tea or coffee some times like we use to do.

  23. It’s funny, I have been working in offices for years and I DREAM of working from home, and yet a little voice tells me that there’ll be days like you have described where the motivation lags, I’ll find myself in front of the fridge not knowing how I got there, spending excessive amounts of time playing with the cat and talking to the budgie… Rest assured you can easily be a cubicle dweller again if you tire of the working from home life. But I wouldn’t give it up too easily, I’d love to be in your shoes salsa binges and all!

  24. I like this illustration! Yeah, working from home gives you the freedom to eat tons o salsa in your boxers — whereas doing that in an office will surely get you escorted out of the building.

  25. I also have been working at home since 2007, my feelings are little different form you. I love freedom. The only bad things is; sometimes I feel like “I’m lonely person” True, I’m warring about it.

  26. i really don’t understand what you meant. Did you hate working from home or you hate to work in the office environment. And the salsa thingy means what? that you are lazy working from home?

    Your page background is unique in a way and sketches are beautiful.

  27. I agree! I can most certainly sympathize with the ability of cleaning up a bowl of salsa in 1 sitting along with a giant bag of corn chips sitting at my desk in my pj’s. However, I must say that I do enjoy working from home as I am now my own boss. I could ever go back to working for someone else.

  28. I tried that once – that whole working from home. It was convenient for me because I’m a student, so I need all the time to be at home, facing my computer screen, doing homework and real paid work at the same time. So I had no complaints. But man, if I’m going to just work from home my whole life? Uh, no thanks.

  29. I also work from home and have been doing so for a couple of years now. I am now missing the silly intrigues of office life. I walk to the shops just to bump into people and exchange gossip. I check up on the cats every 30 minutes. I have banned facebook from my life. I thyink I want a normal insane life again…

  30. i empathize … but i would still not go back to daily corporate hell unless i had a gun pointed at my head.

    one thing is for sure: if you are having any kind of existential crisis or mindfuton (e.g. “what is my life for?” “is it all worthwhile?”) then as a person who works alone, at home, all day, you really get to experience some deep pain without the distractions of petty corporate politicking and mundane daily maltreatment. all your excuses for feeling blue are no longer there!

    i’m not sure yet whether this is a good thing or a bad thing.

  31. I’m trying to work from home. I’m trying to get to the stage where there actually is regular work to be done from home. I also wear boxer shorts when I’m working, but only then. At other times, when I’m looking for work, or just waiting for the phone to ring, I find boxers terribly enhance the feeling of failure.

  32. I can relate to your post since I also work from home. It’s kinda boring sometimes but the fact that you have the freedom to choose what time you wanna start your day is reason enough for me to stick with this kind of life. Lol!

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