After years of serving as a vessel for ice cream, soup and beverages hot and cold, the mug holding pens, pencils, paper clips, and a toothbrush on the desk of Emily Granger, 24, has not only accepted its new role as an office accessory but found joy in it.
“I used to think only food and drink could fill me–both my body and my zest for life,” the mug explained in an exclusive interview with Wet Socks. “I never knew I could feel this way about sitting idle for so long, but I feel renewed. I feel useful.”
The mug, boasting its signature “I’m crabby before my coffee!” script and graphic, was initially skeptical of its new role in Granger’s office. Following years of regular routine—cupboard, sink, dishwasher—it was admittedly frightened a few months ago when Granger, running late to work, brought it along for the ride.
“I went from being terrified of a spill to taking in this brand new environment—new sounds, colors, voices. It was a wild day,” the mug says.
Granger began using it for office coffee to save time and money, but the routine eventually faded, relegating the mug to simple office accessory. It sat idly for days, wondering about Granger’s outside coffee consumption, but most of all, its own future.
“Those were the roughest times,” the mug said, the emotion palpable in its voice. “I had never felt so useless, and worse, ignored. I may as well not have existed, and it was hard not to question what I was even doing there in the first place.”
A few more days passed, however, and the fateful day arrived: Granger placed a pen she had been using to take notes inside the mug.
“It was cold and pointy, and she dropped it in tip side down, so it was a little extra shocking,” the mug said.
As time passed, Granger began placing more and more objects in the mug—pens, pencils, old fortune cookie fortunes, loose paper clips rubber bands—until it became a fixture on her desk. Despite initial mixed feelings, the mug slowly began to regain a sense of purpose as it understood its permanence in Granger’s office.
“I’ll admit, at first I felt like I was being used. It was almost worse than being ignored,” the mug said reflectively. “But as more and more starting coming in, and as she tucked me into the corner next to her stapler, I started to think that maybe this wasn’t so bad. Maybe this was what I was really brought here to do.”
Since then, the mug has flourished, welcoming Granger’s after lunch toothbrush into its midst and relishing its role as a regular player in her ever-growing schedule. It confesses that it does miss the connection of providing Granger and others with food and drink, but takes pride in its new life and responsibility.
“Maybe one day she’ll empty me out, wash me off, and pour something into me. Who knows?” the mug said. “Until then, I’ll be here, sitting and helping.”