Is there such a thing as TMI at the office? One could argue that we at Intel, who are so tethered together that our daily IM exchanges invariably include things like, “I’m getting in the shower now” or “I just ate a giant hunk of really old cheese” or “I’m going to read that New Yorker article in the bathroom” may not be in the position to render judgment. But we can’t help but point out that at least one anecdote Elizabeth Bernstein relays in a Wall Street Journal story about office TMI ought not to be classified as such.
Basically, you will know TMI when you hear it. I did, when a coworker told me he keeps a tambourine in his nightstand “for special performances.” “Oh, don’t act like such an old lady,” he said after seeing my stunned expression. “That’s by far the most inoffensive thing in there.”
Later, “Mr. Tambourine Man” admits to the writer that “he thought he was being funny, but could tell immediately by the resounding silence of everyone around him that he had made a grave miscalculation.” Bernstein wants us to believe that said miscalculation was his decision to reveal too much, but we think more likely he was referring to his choice of workplace. Why does the Journal not appreciate this joy-filled, clearly multitalented man? He can regale us in our cubicle any time, tambourine or no.