The other day someone said I should decorate my office more.
I joked that I could hang up pictures of my favorite tennis player, Andre Agassi, on the walls in my office.
But in general I disagree with the idea that I should decorate my office. I don’t want a bunch of my personal possessions in my office at the New Albany Gazette. What if my bosses decide they don’t want me around anymore. Then I will have to go to all the trouble to pack up my belongings and take them home.
If I ever have to move out of my office I can be packed up in about 10 minutes. I would simply have to move the trashcan by my desk and push all the papers into the wastebasket. I hope I am never asked to leave the newspaper, but it is always good to be prepared.
I don’t even hang my college degree in my office like a lot of people do. I do, however, have a picture of my wife and daughter on my desk. This helps me remember what is most important in life. When I look at the picture of my wife and daughter smiling, it is encouraging and motivates me to get work done. When I am faced with a tight deadline or some other complicated task, it’s as if my wife and daughter are saying, “You can do it!”
There are dozens of newspaper awards hanging up on the back wall of my office, but I did not win any of them. Those awards were on the wall when I started working at the newspaper last year, and I just never took them down. I am not trying to take credit for other people’s awards by leaving them hanging up in my office. I feel it is not my place to take those awards off the wall since I did not win them. So I just let them hang on the wall to honor the winners.
I could bring in my own awards from other newspapers I’ve worked for and hang those on the wall, but I don’t feel like doing that either.
Also in my office there is a picture of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Theodore Roosevelt. And the final thing on the wall in my office is a list of 100 Useful Things That You Can Do With The Newspaper. It has suggestions such as using it as worm food or using it to swat flies. Here’s another idea, a newspaper could also be used to decorate an office if one were so inclined.
Everything hanging on the walls in my office was here when I arrived at the newspaper. I don’t know who put them up, but they must have had better decorating skills than me.
If I were to hang up something in my office it might be a picture I painted of the late 60 Minutes newsman Mike Wallace. I painted a picture of Wallace interviewing the Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979 about the hostage crisis. It was one of Wallace’s most famous interviews and can be seen on YouTube. Maybe one day the painting will be seen on one of my blank office walls.