While I’m on silly stories, as in yesterday’s blog post, I should tell the one of a former colleague who used to keep a jar of M&M’s on her desk. Her well-publicized rules were two and simple:
- Feel free to stop by any time and have a handful.
- It’d be nice if people who partook would occasionally contribute to the stash.
I was often across the hall to talk about work, and would
occasionally often snag a few. Sometimes I’d stop over just for a handful and a chat, which was part of the point of her having them there — to encourage a “get to know people” sort of morale. And, yes, once in a while I’d bring in a bag to refill the jar.
Others also stopped to chat and snack. Some did more of what you might call “drive-bys,” grabbing some candies without bothering to be social about it. No one else, though, ever brought contributions for the jar, though they all knew she asked for them.
Eventually, inevitably, she decided to let the jar empty. She asked me not to bring any refills, to see if others would do as it got more alarmingly empty. No one did.
It finally got down to one, lone disc at the bottom of the jar. No one would take the last one, and no one brought more.
And one day, with a sigh, my colleague ate the last one herself and took the jar home. And that was it for the office M&M’s.