Anyone who works in an office knows the woes of sharing a communal space with others. For many, the kitchen tends to be one of the most common areas where differences in cleaning habits surface.
One office manager knew this hardship all too well. Her name is Sheryl and she had been working at her new workplace for only a couple days before she noticed the growing mess in the kitchen. For the first few weeks, she kept quiet as she cleaned other’s messes. But sadly, her efforts made little difference and the messes only continued to worsen.
After about six months, the day finally arrived when Sheryl couldn’t take the kitchen chaos anymore. On Monday morning, she walked into her office and headed to the kitchen to start on the coffee. That’s when she smelled it: the horrid smell of rotting food. Sheryl couldn’t bear it anymore.
She cleaned the kitchen, spotless, from top-to-bottom and made sure to get every bit of rotten food out of the fridge. Once the thankless task was completed and without a single word to anyone, she marched over to her desk, opened her computer, and began typing out a friendly reminder to her staff. Her email was nothing short of epic.
"Good morning my fellow humans! Welcome back to our first full week of work following the holidays...I wish you all strength in making it a full five days this week!!!
"I do have one item of business I need to "discuss" with the Temecula location employees (particularly this downstairs group but felt maybe everyone can benefit from this reminder) and that is the item of the fridge/kitchen area. This morning, I also spent some time removing food and filth from the microwave, along with removing food and filth from the refrigerator...none of which I was responsible for. In addition, it appears that occasionally someone gets a case of the tremors (probably from a lack of caffeine---I feel your pain) and manages to get coffee grounds in many other areas besides the needed coffee filter.
"Therefore, it is with great encouragement that I come to all of you to seek your assistance in maintaining this wonder called a kitchen. Please see the following rules and when reading, please picture your mother, hands on hips and possibly wagging an index finger at you (my children know this pose well)...
"1. If you spill, splatter, dribble, or sneeze there are paper towels just begging to be used to assist you in your clean up efforts. Please give them a job and remember...they want to be thorough!
"2. When the paper towels have been depleted, please turn 180 degrees and retrieve a new roll from the supply room. PLEASE NOTE: Paper towels do NOT have the ability to put themselves on the roller. Please give them the proper assistance by unscrewing the end cap, removing the cardboard roll with lint attached and looking all sad, and then sliding on the happy new roll and screwing back on the end cap. There is a slight possibility that the sky will open up and angels will sing...don't be alarmed...this is a perfectly normal and preferred response to the situation (male species, and occasionally the female species, please note this method also works well for toilet paper rolls but installation methods may vary).
"3. When bringing your meals or snacks or any other item with you, please use the masking tape and markers provided to properly name and date your items. This way we can properly identify our chronic offenders and decide on the appropriate biblical punishment. (Keep in mind stoning and flogging were quite common)
"4. When microwaving your items, please cover the remnants to be heated with either a paper towel or the recommended plate covers that have been provided for your use free of charge. This makes for a beautiful, splatter-free microwaving experience for others who would prefer not to have your fish and liver particles from five weeks ago present in their meal. When finished with your microwaving experience, please rinse (and scrub if necessary with the magical soap wand located in the sink area) and return the plate cover to the drying rack for the next beautiful human to use.
"5. Last, but not least, after using a dish, utensil, plate cover, or even your personal eating device, the sink is not the appropriate place to leave the item. The magical soap wand is properly outfitted to remove food, coffee or other particles from the eating device. Please treat these eating devices with the respect they deserve from enduring your repeated stirring, licking, and shoveling experiences...they have feelings too and want to have a shower or bath and return to a lounging position just like the rest of us.
"Thank you all for your attention to this matter and we look forward to 2018 being a much more enjoyable kitchen experience!!!!"
Her email has been shared with her team and thousands of others since it was first penned. Her genius effort in ending the communal kitchen mess has left people from around the world laughing and, hopefully, a cleaner workspace for her and her staff. You go, Sheryl!! This really is epic!