SAN FRANCISCO—Deeply saddened that one of their own was confined to such punishing solitude, employees of DigiMax Solutions expressed concern Friday that the benefits of the company’s open-office floor plan had not been extended to the media firm’s CEO, Carter Foss. “I feel so bad that he doesn’t get to enjoy the intense collaborative synergy of this work environment the way the rest of us do,” said junior developer Megan Chen, one of three dozen DigiMax employees who spends the entirety of her workday sitting within arm’s reach of her colleagues at a long, unpartitioned table, and is unable to look up from her laptop without risking a moment of awkward eye contact. “It’s hard to imagine what it must be like for him to go through his day without hearing every intimate detail of his coworkers’ lives, or allowing them to hear his. How does he even get any work done? And just think, whenever he wants to have a one-on-one conversation with someone at his desk, there’s no one around to listen except him and the person he’s talking to. That must be so terribly isolating.” A downcast Chen was later seen shaking her head as Foss closed the door of his office in order to make a routine private phone call.
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