If you’re a history buff, you will appreciate the nautical roots and connotation of water cooler gossip. Scuttlebutt gets it name from shipmates sipping water from a cask and telling stories about their day. It’s slang for rumor or gossip and applied in today’s world. It equates to “water cooler gossip” when individuals have a break and want to share information.
We have two water coolers in our home that both endorse the Scuttlebutt mindset. One water cooler sits in our kitchen where meals and snacks happen each day. It is here that conversations begin and end with several different versions. A great deal of time is spent in my office untangling the “he said, she said” to find peace between two young adults.
The second water cooler is found in the staff office. Unfortunately, like many offices this is where the stories get watered down, re-hydrated, and even seasoned to take on a different flavor. This scuttlebutt also takes a lot of time and energy to restate, clarify, demystify, and extinguish stories to bring them back to reality.
Thinking back on the days of preschool, children often role played the game “telephone.” It was here that a story began in one ear and was reinvented over and over again until it no longer represented what was stated. Today, as the work week begins, I begin reading the grievances from the weekend. One alleges that another one said….
The reality is this. Scuttlebutt has been around for centuries. It has been both the root of failed friendships and marriages and riots and wars. As we start the workweek, I challenge you to have some water cooler chat today. Don’t limit it there. Speak to a stranger or a child in care. Spread a rumor that the world appreciates them. Thank them for being kind or tell them a little bird told you they are awesome! It qualifies for Scuttlebutt, but I can promise you we will spend less time investigating it and more time celebrating it. Have a peaceful day and tell someone you love them. It makes a difference.
Visit our website to learn more about us. The Scuttlebutt says “we’re awesome” and so are you.