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Wednesday, 28 March 2007

Blackberry sundae

To blackberry, or not to blackberry? That is the oft-asked question amongst working mums these days. Some avoid them like the plague, believing that once the proud owner of a 'BB' - as they are lovingly called - one is tied to the office just as in the days before 'equality' one was tied to the kitchen sink. I know my husband believes that the extent of my 'juggling' has reached new heights of ridiculousness now that he regularly trudges up to bed at around midnight only to find me sat up in bed, breastfeeding the baby, reading a manuscript and emailing on the BB, all at the same time. In fact, I hear it said from many quarters that being ignored by one's partner in favour of a Blackberry is one of today's top irritants amongst couples. But I believe that with a certain amount of associated discipline a Blackberry can be one of the most liberating, enabling devices for the working mum. I have long held that a culture of long office hours is just plain wrong. Here in the UK we work the longest hours in Europe, working on average seven or eight more hours per week than we are contracted to, without pay. A while ago I worked in an office where at least one particular individual (male and childless of course) crowed constantly about how late he had been in the office every night and 'marvelled' snidely about my ability to leave on time most days. From my perspective, hanging around in the office long after everyone else has left is not only wrong but it's also just plain stupid. We no longer need to sit in a particular building or indeed in any building at all in order to do our jobs. We are connected through the wonder of the Blackberry, and I for one salute them. Of course, as mentioned, it is important to maintain a certain amount of discipline where their useage is concerned. My 'BB rules' are only to respond to important or urgent messages or to messages from colleagues in different time zones outside of office hours, and to try to ignore it altogether on a day's holiday .... but that flickering red light announcing that a new message has arrived can sometimes be hard to ignore....

...Sometimes I worry about the vacuousness of thoughts that go through my head. As I wrote this post I found myself wondering, "Why don't Blackberries come with Cath Kidston covers?" My only excuse is that it's been one helluva day. Must go and have a long soak in the bath (without the BB). Goodnight!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Don't get me started!

When I worked in an office it used to drive me to distraction that the men smirking as I walked out the door at 6.30 all had stay-at-home wives to balance their lives/house/children for them. Grrrr.

And I hated my husbands crackberry - until I learnt how to use it checking up on things on holiday. From then on he had to wrestle it from me!!

And why are they blue? Blackberries should be dark red or purple!