Stuff You Say When You’re Avoiding Work

“I’m just going to take time out from work to watch this kitten video. And that related video of the koala hugging a labrador retriever, that one is OK to watch too. Oh, there’s a video of three koalas fighting here… I’ve never seen koalas fight before. OK, we can watch that, it’s no problem. I’m expanding my knowledge here so it’s fine — I’ll know what it looks like when koalas fight. It’s good for me. I’ll be a smarter person.”

“I’ve been working for one hour now. Well, it’s probably only been half an hour, seeing as I’ve mostly been focusing on this Gchat with this person I really want to sleep with, eventually… Well, I’ve been sitting at my desk for an entire hour, at least. I need to stretch. I need to take a little walk around the office right now, it’s healthy for my body. Your actions are justified — you’re being healthy. You need to burn calories.”

“I can’t get any of this work done with the dishes the way they are. I must clean them! It is the right thing to do!”

“It’s fine to have Gmail chat, Facebook chat, and Twitter open right now. They’ll just provide ‘micro-breaks’ every minute or so. That way, instead of taking like one or two longer breaks, I’ll just sit in front of the computer all day, occasionally chatting and stuff, and it won’t be an issue. It’s just a different way to organize my time — almost constant distraction.”

“Oh! Occupy Oakland got in another skirmish with the police. And the cops in NYC took away Occupy Wall Street’s generators!! And what?! Herman Cain has received yet another sexual harassment allegation?! I must read these stories right away — I must stay informed! Work can wait, I need to know what’s happening. Solidarity! And news!”

“I’m going outside for a cigarette. I’ll start on this after smoking.”

“Am I hungry right now? I think I might be hungry. What’s in the fridge? Hm… doesn’t look like much. I definitely don’t feel like preparing something. A bowl of cereal? Nah, only the end is left — hate that. I should probably get to work. I’m not really hungry. But… I feel like I should snack on something. I need to go to the fridge again, maybe I missed something.”

“I can’t get any of this work done with my email account in such disarray. I have to clean it up. It must be cleaned now! It is imperative!”

“If I drink a little… it’ll loosen me up. I can’t think of how to start on this project, and if I just have one glass of wine, and maybe smoke a cigarette, I’ll feel less stressed and better able to really dive into this project. This is a really solid idea, it’s totally justifiable. This is justified. Don’t worry that this isn’t justifiable. You’re not being an alcoholic here.”

“Is that water I hear? What is that sound? I must inspect this sound. It must be dealt with! I can’t work with this weird sound bothering me! No work will happen until I locate the mystery sound and stop it.”

“Oh my god, the internet went out. I know that I don’t need the internet for this project and have been working on it in a Word doc, but I can’t be without the internet. What if someone emails me something important? The internet is not coming back on. The lights keep flashing and going out. I hate my ISP. That’s it! It’s been too long. I have no other choice — I’m walking to a coffee shop with WiFi!” TC mark

image – susansimon


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    “I’m just going to check Thought Catalog one more time to see if there are any updates. Oh there are? Well I must read it now. Hmm, that’s an author I don’t remember seeing before, let me read all his stories, and his tumblr and his Twitter feed.”

    • Disha Pandey

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  • Hannah

    Hahaha I can totally relate with the IM GOING TO TURN OFF THAT ANNOYING MYSTERIOUS SOUND RIGHT NOW thing.

  • Soraya

    why i think i do need to take another piss.

  • Alasdair

    I was going to do some work, then I saw I had a Facebook update, then I saw that Thought Catalog had updated and read this instead.

  • F.

    Story of my life

  • h-may

    You forgot procrasturbation. 

    “I’ll just visit *one* porn site …” – famous last words for a night of focused work.

  • mya

    snaking + wine + smoke: next thing you know, you’ve cooked your self a full-course meal with two glasses of wine, and since you ate, you !absolutely must! have a cigarette. Once you’re back to your desk, you’re too goddamn full and a wee-bit tipsy to do work right away, so you decide to take a 2 minute nap.

    …and wake up the next morning screaming to yourself

  • EarthToNichole

    “Instead of writing this article for my real (boring) job, I think I’ll take a break and work on a pop culture piece to submit to Thought Catalog.”

  • Anonymous
  • Autumn

    “I should really just flip through this 137-photo “HALLOWEEN PARTY!!” album a third time. Just to be sure no one untagged themselves.”

  • Anonymous
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