Rob Knight

The Roman Break

June 18, 2007

There are many ways to relax at work and take a few minutes for a brain break. Some people go out for a smoke, or you can head to your car for a quick nap. You can take a pee break or answer a cell phone call from a family member in need of tech support.

In my office, we have a new type of break: The Roman Break.

Roman breaks start without you even considering that it was time for a break. You were just working peacefully when all of the sudden you heard an adorable giggle or squeal. Without knowing it, you’ve just started a Roman break. You are compelled to go see what all of the fun is about. Work life comes to a complete halt as you walk over to see what is going on in Roman’s little world. This may be construed as unproductive; those “construers” would be mistaken. Once you pop your head into the bassinet and Roman pops you one of his trademark squinty smiles, the rest of the day is a happy, productive time for all.

In all seriousness, having a 5 month old in the office has been so much fun. I haven’t been around newborns very much in my life, so at first I was a bit afraid. Babies seem so fragile it can be scary to hold them because you feel like they might break (I don’t know how, just indulge me here). That all faded away the first time I picked him up after a diaper change and he smiled at me. Now, it doesn’t feel right when he isn’t in the office. He has been instrumental in keeping our office light-hearted during some stressful days (and nights) over the past couple of months with his loud giggles and gas. We’ve all been “splooged” on and enjoy Roman’s post-feeding burps.

Best of all, though, is that we get to watch a new life flourish right before our eyes. In just 5 months, we’ve witnessed so many milestones: smiles, laughs, assisted rollovers (and just today, an unassisted one), adult sounding farts…the list goes on and on. For me (planning to enter into fatherhood at some point in the future) this is the best kind of training one could hope for. I am privileged to work with Roman in the office. It also says a lot about the evolving workplace. This is Office 2.0. Collective productivity is enhanced when you have an unlimited source of cuteness to draw upon.

Above is a short video of Tracy on a Roman break. Enjoy.