Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Work Space Wondering

Even though it feels like summer (with a vengeance, in my neck of the woods), fall semester has started. I've logged a lot of office time this week as I prepare for classes and meet with students. Spending time at a desk and clearing off the auxiliary work spaces that always pop up as I prepare for a new semester got me thinking about my characters' desks, so I thought I'd pull out an old post and share their desk stories again, along with some musings that arose for me as I re-read the descriptions.

Jim, I think, would have the tidiest, most sterile desk of all, at least at work, where he has a secretary to help him keep things straight. I picture his desk at home as a substantial, heavy, dark wood piece, littered with those pink slips secretaries use to write down phone messages, with a blotter and client files stacked neatly in a holder.

I wonder...what those little pink slips say and whether or not he has a hierarchy when it comes to returning phone calls. I suspect he handles the high profile calls and delegates the rest to Desiree.

Angel's desk, I think, might look something like the photo at right: neat and tidy, with a planner being the central feature. She'd have a tablet instead of a computer, using the desktop computer in Jim's office if she needed to use a computer at all. Instead of the cacti on the left hand side of the photo, she'd probably have fresh flowers, but nothing fussy -- perhaps a single stem in a crystal bud vase, off to the side where it wouldn't get in the way. Her desk would be a neat little nook in her kitchen or breakfast room -- somewhere she could plan menus as easily as she could keep track of the family planner.

I wonder...if she's tempted to put a desk in the nursery or somewhere upstairs so she can be closer to Spencer when she finally succumbs to sleep.

Marita's kitchen is smaller and less modern, but with
a similar counter set up.
Photo: Memory Catcher via Pixabay
Marita's house is small, without extra space to dedicate to an office, so she wouldn't have a desk at all. Like Angel, she'd likely pull up a chair in the kitchen, and keep her paperwork tucked in a drawer, only she wouldn't have a dedicated nook like Angel. The kitchen island, outfitted with bar stools, would be the place she'd sit if she needed a place to pay bills -- that is, if she didn't just do so on the living room sofa while watching television. She'd keep her files in a two-drawer wooden cabinet in the living room -- one that doubles as a side table. Her laptop would be wherever she left it last.

I wonder...if Charli will convince Marita that she needs a laptop of her own. I'm pretty sure Marita would cave, but require that Charli use it downstairs. Marita knows too much about how easy it is to hide things from unsuspecting parents.

Charli's desk is a hand-me-down -- an old wooden desk with three drawers to the right -- two narrow, one deep. It was Marita's when she was a teenager, but, every time they talk about replacing it, Charli hesitates. She thinks her mother doesn't know that she loves the file drawer because she can just sweep everything off her desk and into that deep drawer when it's time to clean things up. Marita just smiles, not telling her daughter that she used to do the same thing.

I wonder...if Charli knows her mother used that same trick to keep private papers hidden, confident that her mother wouldn't go through the piles to find the secret notes and stash of things she wasn't supposed to have in her room.

Helen 1965 vis Pixabay
Bets's desk isn't a desk at all -- just a table on one wall of her apartment, just as likely to hold lipstick as a laptop. Sometimes it's neat, sometimes it's the drop zone at the end of a busy week. She might or might not find her bills there; they're just as likely to be on the table by the door where she drops her mail. Bets loves clean lines and a contemporary feel, but she also loves relaxation, bright pops of color and a night curled up on the couch watching old movies, so a desk isn't high on her priority list.

I wonder...if Bets realizes that those clean lines and largely uncluttered spaces are a carry-over from her years of school desk inspections. Maybe she does and that's why it's only clear some of the time.

What do you wonder about these Casting the First Stone characters and their work spaces?

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