Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 

I blame the cynical individual who invented the open-plan office.

There, all you have is a cubicle and the echo of a thousand voices all around you.

Nothing is private. 

Your screen gets stared at by passers-by. 

No, that's not a video game. That's footage from our Annual General Meeting.

It's extraordinary how the open cubicle seems to have proliferated just as the internet sucked us in and stripped away the remains of our privacy.

Sometimes, though, you want to have a private conversation. Yes, with another human being via your phone.

You can text them or WhatsApp them, of course. Occasionally, though, you want to hear their voice. Especially if it's your lawyer, your lover or your louche new best friend.

Here, then, is an ingenious system that allows you to do that.

It's called Bloxvox.

All you do is slip your headphones' microphone inside. Well, and put the Bloxvox over your mouth, like a mask.

As I said, like a mask.

The drawback, as you can see, is that it makes you look a touch like Hannibal Lecter.

Or someone commentating on a soccer game, circa 1964. 

The advantage, however, is that it makes you look a touch like Hannibal Lecter.

No one wants to go near anyone who looks like they're wearing a muzzle.

And please don't worry, this thing does apparently still let you breathe.

"Join the revolution to change the way we make phone calls," says the nice man in the video.

I'm not sure I'd quite describe this as a revolution.

I am, though, moved by the idea that all those people who call or FaceTime as they walk down the street or in coffee shops or at airports could strap one of these masks on.

I believe that peace in our time is still possible.

Published on: May 23, 2018