15 Things Your Coworkers Would Say If They Were Actually Honest About Office Life

NBC/The Office

Few things are more complicated than the subtle and mysterious code used among officemates. For the most part, you’ll probably find yourself working with relatively polite, semi-normal human beings who don’t want to hurt your feelings and are tactful enough not to really say what they’re thinking; however, this can make for a confusing time when you’re trying to navigate the office without getting roped into extra work or forced into awkward social encounters. In order to help you out, here are 15 common things that your coworkers probably want to say, but won’t.

1. I’m going to corner you in the bathroom and talk to you for 15 solid minutes.

Get ready! We’ll plan to meet in like 20 minutes, OK? You’ll try to quickly pee and then leave, but I’ll exit my stall at the exact instant you’re washing your hands, so the only way out is past me. And I won’t let you leave. I hope that doesn’t put a cramp in your plans for the day.

2. I’ll be right with you; I’m just going to spend two more hours looking at shit on BuzzFeed.

We all know I don’t actually do any work, right? Let’s just clear that up right now.

3. I shouldn’t really eat any more doughnuts, but if anyone takes the last doughnut, I will hunt them down and put their head on a spike.

I’m not going to lie to you: I want that last doughnut. I won’t play coy. I won’t pretend I don’t want it and then get pissed when someone else takes it. I won’t slice little pieces off of it and then deny that I did so. I want that doughnut.

4. I understand that you spent a lot of time on this, but I don’t actually care.

It’s really nice that you spent so much time and effort on this, but it means nothing to me. I will either brush it off like it’s no big deal or act like a huge asshole and belittle your work.

5. You’ll really regret working here in about three months.

Welcome to the team! You’re going to hate it here. A few months from now, you’ll spend your sleepless nights dreading the next morning and wishing you had worked at Taco Bell instead.

6. I have no respect for your personal items; in fact, I plan on pushing your salad to the back of the refrigerator this very afternoon.

Let’s not fool each other and act like we care about other people’s stuff. After years of working here, all I care about is me. And my own salad.

7. I hate saying “hi” to people.

Let’s also not waste time with empty pleasantries. How about we make a pact in which neither of us ever says “hi” so we don’t have to worry about greetings and awkward eye contact? We’ll just half-smile, nod and move on.

8. If you knew how rarely this office was cleaned, you’d never come back here.

Just sayin’… your risk of contracting some sort of virus from mouse droppings is pretty high.

9. I’m going to talk to you whenever you most need to concentrate.

So, what are you up to? Working? Have I told you about my 16 hamsters lately? They’re doing quite well, although Mr. Noodles has some kind of hamster flu. I knitted him a onesie so he won’t get cold. Here’s a picture.

10. Please don’t tell me anything about yourself.

I don’t want to hear about your weekend or your stupid vacation. I was stuck here at work all week. I hate my life, and I hate yours, too.

11. Alternatively, tell me EVERYTHING about yourself.

Oh, so you don’t feel like sharing intimate personal information? Well, too bad, because I’m going to ask anyway, and then I’ll overshare about my own life. Got a question about long-seated phobias, insecurities or medical issues? Now’s the time to ask! I’ll tell you even if you don’t ask!

12. Oh, this old thing? I just bought it a week ago because I felt the need to be better-dressed than everyone else.

I’m here to make you feel like an uncoordinated, ill-fitting slob! Everyone tell me how great I look. I insist.

13. I’m going to leave 20 minutes early today for no reason.

I used to leave five minutes early, because who doesn’t? Then I started leaving 10 minutes early to “beat the traffic.” As my time of departure slides ever closer and closer to half an hour early, I know that I can count on you not to rat me out. But I’m the only one allowed to leave this early.

14. Here’s a bunch of crap that I don’t want to do.

I won’t insult your intelligence by pretending that this is a challenging new assignment or that it’s something everyone has to do every now and then; it’s basically just a bunch of terrible work that I don’t want to do, so I’m giving it to you.

15. I’m too afraid to confront this person to their face, but I want you to righteously complain about them with me.

What a jerk! Can you believe them? If I weren’t such a nice person, I’d certainly have some things to say about all this. But I believe in taking the high road, and will therefore give that asshole the cold shoulder for the next two months, even though they probably won’t notice since we almost never talk anyway. Tell me how much you agree; I seriously need your validation right now.