The Psychopathology Of Paperwork

Ben Kafka muses about pushing paper:

Paperwork occupies us and preoccupies us, whether we are maritime lawyers or nail-salon owners, congressional aides or human-resource managers, college professors or freelance web designers. Which leads me to wonder: why is there so little solidarity among all of us paperworkers? Why do we so often feel sorry for ourselves, so burdened by paperwork of one kind or another, while having so little sympathy for othersthe dean who signs off on a clumsy sentence, the secretary who misaddresses an envelope, the paralegal who misses a deadline, the insurance agent who misfiles a claims form?

The reason, I think, is that paperwork has never fit comfortably into our idea of what work means, or what it means to work.