The Bored Stiff


Reader Mark directs our attention to an excellent article at the BBC website that starts by looking at the urban myth of the five-day-old unnoticed corpse “working” in an office:

Isn’t it strange that so many of us who encounter this apocryphal story genuinely shrug and mumble “Yeah, that’s about right”?

Why does it resonate so well with our experiences of employment today? A number of reasons might be behind this.

and leads up to a deduction worthy of our own organ:

Our work-centric society is swiftly becoming obsolete … the possibility of a jobless future might soon be a reality. It’s up to us to decide whether this future is going to be a nasty nightmare (involving corpses frozen at their desks) or a beautiful paradise of play.

It’s written by Peter Flemming whose book Dead Man Working is good stuff. He’s got a new one out called The Mythology of Work: How Capitalism Persists Despite Itself.

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Robert Wringham is the editor of New Escapologist. He also writes books and articles. Read more at

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