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The "Box"

"Sucked into the box again..."

I wish I had a sound file of Home Simpson saying "Mmmmm box" to put here. That would help to make my point even more...

Simply put, the "box" reefers to computers. I honestly don't remember how this phrase become part of Proutspeak, but once it did, several several other words and/or phrases sprung into being. Briefly, they are:

Box Talk Talking about computers and/or computer-related stuff.
"No box talk!" Loudly proclaimed at lunch when too many of us wandered into box-land.
Shop Talk Talking about work (and computers). Keep reading and you'll understand.

You're probably wondering why it became necessary to coin terms like "box talk" and why there'd be so much of it at our gatherings. Well, you have to understand bit about the people involved. In descending order of "computer geekness," we had: Z, Justin, Jer, Aaron, Mike, and occasionally Brandt or Tom. Well, when this many people have something in common, they are bound to talk about it when they get together. Not only were we all computer geeks to some degree, four of us also worked for Computer Services, and loved to swap stories about the stupid things that happened at work. This topic of discourse soon became known as shop talk.

I don't think there was a single lunch during which two or more of us [the computer geeks] were present and box talk did not occur. At times, we were quite good about "behaving" ourselves and trying not to alienate the female half of Prout Table. But other times that had to "remind" us of our sins by loudly yelling "No box talk!"

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Jeremy D. Zawodny / jzawodn@bgnet.bgsu.edu

Updated: April 20th, 1996