US office worker goes viral on TikTok after moving into his cubicle to 'protest' against low income

The corporate worker is expecting his employment to be terminated after he was "evicted" from his office cubicle.
The corporate worker is expecting his employment to be terminated after he was "evicted" from his office cubicle. Photo credit: calm.simon / TikTok

Working from home has its pros: no rush-hour commute, sweatpants instead of skirts and waking up at a far more reasonable hour.

But it also has its cons. Being productive can be difficult when surrounded by distractions - primarily the fridge, but also flatties wanting a chinwag and the allure of a quick nap on your lunch break.

It's a classic case of 'you can't have your cake and eat it too'. Despite all the benefits of working remotely, your bedroom doesn't have quite the same energy as an open-plan office, and it can be challenging without access to the same technology or equipment. 

Introducing 'homing from work': an arrangement one corporate worker in the US has documented on his TikTok account to the appreciation of millions.

The man, known only as Simon, has built a dedicated following on the platform after he moved into his office cubicle, sharing entertaining daily updates on his new living arrangement.

While it sounds humorous, Simon noted that he cannot afford to continue living in a traditional apartment due to his low income. His poor pay inspired the concept of 'homing from work' as a form of protest against his meagre earnings, he said. 

In the initial video posted last week, which has since amassed more than 12 million views, Simon showed his followers his new makeshift abode. 

"Check out my new apartment," he said, filming himself unpacking his belongings from a number of bags and suitcases. 

"I'm moving from my apartment into my cubicle at work. They do not pay me enough to do both, so as a matter of protest, I am just going to live at my job," he narrated the footage.

"And we'll see how long I can get away with this."

In a later clip, Simon explained that the rest of his coworkers are currently working from home due to an outbreak of COVID-19, which allowed him to quietly move into his cubicle without questions.

In another follow-up video, Simon confirmed he showered in a second building. The clip shows him standing in the men's bathroom, which features two showers and a shelf stacked with clean towels.

Regarding his diet, Simon claimed he was surviving solely on canned pineapple and ham, which he filmed himself stockpiling in the office's communal fridge. For a bed, he slept in a sleeping bag under his desk with a sheet over the top to block out the light.

In a separate clip, Simon said that his scheme is "not technically unlawful" but merely "frowned upon".

But the experiment was short-lived, with the worker confirming he had been "evicted" from the cubicle on day four of his stay, much to the disappointment of his invested viewers. 

"Day four is indeed the end," he captioned the last clip in his 'homing from work' series, sharing footage of himself and his bags being removed from the office by what appears to be two security guards. 

"It happened way sooner than I thought," he said. 

Following his "eviction", Simon said his relationship with the company will "likely" come to an end, but the status of his employment has yet to be decided.

"It's likely going to end, it's up in the air, [it's up to my employer] whether or not it's going to be quiet and nice, or whether it's going to be a whole thing. It's up to them," he said.

"All my stuff is in storage, I'm at an Airbnb, I've got my pineapple and I'm dancing on a tennis court," he added. "Don't worry about Simon, I'm safe and calm as always."

Despite entertaining millions of people with his exploit, some were suspicious about the validity of Simon's endeavour. Some suggested that he in fact owned the workplace or the business was his own company, with many in disbelief that he was able to get away with such a stunt for four days. 

"Calling this now, he's the CEO and that's why he doesn't care about the cameras because [at] the end of the day it's his business. This is probably it," one said.

And according to another video, a cleaning company employed by the office had spotted Simon "squatting" in his cubicle during one of his livestreams.

"HR professional here, wouldn't fly at my workplace but boy was I hoping this would work out for you," one person commented.

"This wouldn't fly in most workplaces, but that's the point," Simon responded. "Hopefully your employees don't feel like they have to do wild shit to save money."