The printer is good because all you ever talk about is the printer and how much you hate said printer. "I hate this printer, I have no idea how to work it!" you complain as you effortlessly work the printer that you do, in fact, know how to work. "Urgh, me too!" replies another liar. Pick up your warm pages and wave goodbye. Textbook.
6| Meeting room
No fucking about in the meeting room. How was your weekend? Mall? Get anything? No? Fine, good, let's pencil another one of these in for next month. I've got to go stare at my own tweets on the toilet for half an hour, but this was constructive.
Very conspiratorial, this one. The place to go when you think someone's bugged the kettle. In truth, there's something quite nice about the stair chat: there you both are, climbing that metaphorical mountain of gawky non-talk together, summit in sight. It's also a great place to avoid a conversation in the first place, as the corner turns block any view of you leaping up five steps at a time.
4| By the water station
There's no ignoring the growing hostility between you, the water-haver, and them, the water-wanter.
3| Supply room
Too intimate. Bit odd.
On the one hand, starting a conversation at the urinal is a mammoth power move. On the other, your actual dangling penis. There's also the very real danger that your boss/C.E.O is locked behind one of those cubicle doors on an impromptu reconnaissance mission.
It's hard enough thinking of a conversation starter that isn't "Stranger Things?" without the added pressure of a time limit. That's not to mention the unspoken rules of etiquette that turn you into a weirdly hostile bellhop ("What floor? No stop I want to press it") and the fact that you're trapped in a mirror-walled hotbox of historic farts. Don't do it to yourself.
This story originally appeared on Esquire.co.uk.
* Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.