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15 Reasons Why “Office Rats” Is More Than Just a (Czech) Phrase

Article June 4, 2019  |  Text by Radek Antl Text by Radek Antl

A little knowledge can be a terribly confusing thing. For example, you might have already learned that your Czech office-mates call each other “office rats.” What? And it sounds a bit mean too, right?

No, not just a bit – it’s mean to the core. But it’s so fitting! Employees working in corporate open-space offices really do resemble the large rodents of the same name. And we’ve found 15 similarities.

1/

They’re really not eager to go outside. They’re most common in metropolises (we’ve heard the biggest office-rat pack is actually in Manhattan – even if they do call themselves “pencil-pushers” over there).

2/

They all love a nice warm, cozy, and clean little nest. Ideally on the highest floor around. Definitely not somewhere in the gutter!

3/

Nevertheless, they have been known to creep through tubes. Not pipe tubes, but the metro, the elevator, Prague’s Blanka tunnel, and more…

4/

That reminds us – they’re great at creeping and crawling around. And carrying germs.

via GIPHY

5/

These rats have their office nests lined with a mix of papers and… something.

6/

Although they possess considerable intelligence, they wander around their home territory like a labyrinth. For some individuals it’s nearly impossible to find a way out. Or in.

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And how about all those obstacles that someone above them has put in their way! Someone who might just simply be experimenting with them.

via GIPHY

8/

Office rats sometimes suffer quite a bit. That might be why most of them don’t hold out in one colony for more than three years.

9/

It seems that most of the rats are actually just toiling in their office labyrinth for a bite to eat.

10/

Speaking of food: Their diet consists mainly of junk food.

11/

That’s why they most often congregate in the kitchen, around a refrigerator full of spoiled items that nobody owns. That place is theirs. And you’ll find so many there.

via GIPHY

12/

Their packs run from 20 to 60 individuals, all capable of staying together in a very small space without biting each other.

13/

Food is one strong motivation for their assembling in these large packs. The breeding instinct is another. It’s primarily expressed at Christmas parties.

14/

Many rats are led by a pied piper. And you know where he’s leading them…

15/

Lots of people maintain a dislike for them without really having a reason why. And yet these creatures are intelligent, quick to learn, undemanding… and easily tamed.

►►► A Pencil Pusher's Vocabulary: The real meaning of words you use at work