The Weight of Success (or “where did all this paper come from?”)

The paperless office.   I’ve been waiting for its arrival since the advent of the word processor in the early 1980’s.  I so admire those sleek business travelers sitting next to me on the plane with nothing but a tiny iPad or Netbook while I balance my 8 pound laptop and 3 floppy paper files on my knees.

Paper is seductive.  There is something satisfyingly concrete about poring over printed financial reports — the paper just waiting for your tiny notations in the margins, so accepting of the bright yellow highlighter poised over its surface.

A reasonable compromise.  This year I started scanning my handwritten meeting notes to be saved as digital files.  Once inserted in an Excel workbook it’s easy to add notations and even hyperlinks to other files.  I can’t seem to make the transition for other documents.  As a mobile worker, this is a problem.  Five years ago I switched to a briefcase on wheels — which is not unlike a hoarder renting extra storage space instead of dealing with the real problem: too much stuff.

Wednesday is “cold turkey” day.  I think I can do this if I take it one day at a time.  On Wednesday I will carry no paper. So if you see me lugging my laptop into Starbuck’s, give me a smile and a nod.  And hide your paper.

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5 comments

  1. Susan, would you mind if I asked which comment plugins you are using on your blog? I don’t think I’ve seen this comment form before… Thank you!

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    1. Hi Darren,
      No plug ins – this is the standard comment form for this theme. I’ve noticed that the comments format for each theme varies slightly. I know this because I change my theme several times per year. A marketing no-no perhaps, but changing themes is one of the things I love about WordPress. Thanks so much for visiting and for leaving comments.
      Susan

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  2. I remember reading articles in the 80’s (when I sold printers retail) that the days of the printer were limited… If I remember correctly now, 2009 was HP’s best year yet for selling printers! Perhaps we are getting closer. Frankly, I can’t wait!
    D

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  3. Great idea! I wish you well with your paperless Wednesdays challenge.

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    1. timethief, I have to be truthful and say that while I reduced the weight of my briefcase I could not get myself to the paperless state. Perhaps this will have to be a gradual goal rather than a cold turkey solution. Thanks so much for leaving a comment.

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