Man of Letters

Welcome to Lew’s (my Dad’s, actually) workstation in Shreveport, Louisiana, USA!

Does this type of setup look recognizable or unusual, ordinary or unfamiliar? While everyone has a “workstation,” not everyone works in a cubicle. What does your workstation look like?

Take a peek at Lew’s responses to the three questions to find out a little bit more about him and what’s going on in his space.



What type of work do you do at your workstation?

“I do online banking,  maintain and update medication lists for both your Mom and myself, write thank you letters to organizations, CEOs, Managers that your Mom and I visit for services (mainly medical offices) maintain charts for medications – both prescribed and OTC medications.  Also I maintain charts that  provide maintenance accomplished and maintenance to be accomplished for our two vehicles.  Maintain up-to-date forms that show USER NAMES and PASSWORDS  for all commercial business that we are affiliated with and we do business with.”

What do you like the most and dislike the most about your workstation?

“I like (the most) my workstation because it is out of the  main walkway in our home and whatever I am working on, it stays at my work station.  I don’t have to set it aside in another area.  The one item I do not like is my television is too big for my size of my work station.  I will change this TV when it stops working and I will purchase a smaller one.”

How does your workstation reflect who you are?

“I have, in the past, been given instructions along with criticisms on just how I can improve my workstation.  This is my workstation.  Some people may say it is not functional, not pretty, to small, too ugly.  It is my workstation – if a person does not like it – tough.  Go somewhere else.   Get a life.  My workstation works for me.”

What do I see when I look at this picture and read the responses?

I see an amazing union between technology of the past and technology of the present. How many people do you know embrace technology that would be considered outdated (typewriter) AND technology that most use today (computer)? Not many, would be my guess. In this picture, I see a workstation that is extremely functional. At any moment, Lew can type a letter, browse the Internet, watch TV, and salute the American flag. This workstation has it all because I happen to know firsthand that there is probably some sort of snack nearby. Cords and wires abound, but I can see Lew has mounted a board behind his computer/TV that holds a power strip. This is genius, actually, because who likes to crawl around under the desk and scrape around in the dark for the outlet? I see at least three lamps, so I’m guessing Lew likes to shed a bit of light on whatever subject he is researching or whatever letter he is typing. Lew is obviously fiercely protective of his space, and rightly so. He has designed it to meet his unique requirements and rare personality. Don’t complain about his workstation’s messiness or utilitarian attitude because Lew will be happy to type up directions to the nearest exit. A workstation that works is a beautiful thing!

What is positive about this space, in my opinion?

Lew is not confined to a business cubicle, so he has free reign and free rein to design his special place in any way or fashion that catches his fancy. I say free reign because Lew is King of this little spot on the planet, and I say free rein because Lew is clearly exercising his freedom to be his own interior decorator (for his personalized nook, at least).  He has created a one-of-kind work area that serves his purpose and provides an electronic hot spot that many might not recognize or even appreciate. Lew is unique that way. Raise your hand if you have a functioning typewriter next to your computer, and you use both regularly. At first glance, the area looks a sight, all tangled up with cords and wires and such, but this workstation is above all else a positive place because it’s unparalleled and it’s designed with one thing in mind: to get the job done. Take a letter, Lew! Send an email! Watch your favorite TV show! Plug in a lamp! Whatever needs to be done, Lew has just the right machinery and a healthy dose of ingenuity to accomplish it all with panache.

Are you interested in participating in this informal anthropological project? I hope you are! Send me a picture of your workstation (preferably with you in it, but you don’t necessarily have to look into the camera), along with your answers to these questions:

  • What type of work do you do at your workstation?
  • What do you like the most and dislike the most about your workstation?
  • How does your workstation reflect who you are?

Is it okay to include your first name and your city, state, and country, or would you prefer to remain anonymous? By choosing to share your workstation (your desk) with me, you agree to have your picture(s) and words publicized without expectation of any remuneration other than the sheer joy of sharing a snippet of your life with others. I will also provide a bit of observational commentary.

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