Friday, November 23, 2007

Le Christmas Bonus

Ho ho ho! It's the most wonderful time of the year, a marshmallow world in the winter, over the woods and through the river and all that bullshit. Sounds to me like it's also time for a little check-up in the the corporate health of America!


Thank you, stage directions. Well, as we know, the dollar is sinking faster than tourist cruises in the Antarctic and the economy is as stable as Nick Nolte pushing a three-wheeled shopping cart through the Mall of America as it slides into a massive sinkhole on double-coupon day. What does that mean for yon intrepid workers of the U.S. economy?

[*additional applause*]

No, not yet, stage directions. I need to line up something resembling a punchline first.


No, don't be like that! I swear, if you wait a minute, it'll be the perfect opportunity. Just bear with me.

[*enter, stage right*]

Thank you. So, where was I? Right then -- our own corporate setup here in New York City. Well, after having been under the tight thumbscrews of a mismanaging syndicate of venture-capitalist-hedge-fund-Ivan-Boesky-alikes for the past three years, my company recently changed hands to... another set of faceless white capitalist portfolio managers who all look like B.J. Novak's character from "The Office."

[*crowd ahhhs*]

Yeah, it's a great show, and my topical reference was well-chosen, too. Everybody wins. Now, with said transaction having taken place only a month-and-a-half ago, there's still no inky pawprint of what the new regime will be like as of yet... but, our first sign is in place already:

Who doesn't love a tin of holiday-themed confections? And who doesn't love a job well done? Put them both together, and you get a delicious triumvirate of flavored popping corn, courtesy of our new "friends" at Arlington Capital.

Surely, you're worth caramel, cheesy, and buttery flavored popcorn, right? When you care to send the very best (except raises), as they say...

[*audience hisses*]

Now, now, stage directions... be nice. To be fair, this single tin of popcorn is already more than our previous ownership actually ever gave us in the entire three year span of their ownership -- along with canceling the tradition of Christmas parties and profit sharing, coupled with the one-time 3% raise they gave us to cover cost-of-living increases... ah, I can go on and on. What may seem like an afterthought from Harry and David here in the ol' workplace is, in fact, what we might call a good start. My co-workers and I are like the battered wife who begins to grow warmly fond of mental cruelty and neglect. You kind of wonder how you ever did without it.

So, what do you say, stage directions? You think the economy is going to hell on a tramp-steamer based on what you're seeing go down in the kitchen at work?

[*lights flash on and off again, as if to signify a storm*]

What kind off bullshit answer is that? It's always so fucking oblique with you.

[*a sandbag drops from the rafters, missing the narrator by mere inches*]

Fuck Me? Fuck you! I'm tired of dealing with your dousch-ey exclamations -- never making any sense! I've carried your fucking ass for far too long. You want to take easy shots at? Is that right? Why don't you get the fuck out and see how ling you last. Get out. Get the fuck out.


And stay out. Always with a head of steam on. Always fucking grousing. Sick of it.

. . .

So lonely. So cold. So lonely. I'm sorry, I was speaking from a place of anger, and I get spiteful. I'm so sorry, stage directions! Please don't go! I'm so alone! So alone! I can't stand it -- it feels like the sun has been blotted out! I can't take it when you're angry at me! Oh god... ohgod ohgod ohgod ohgod... my chest is getting tight. I can do this... calm down... I can get through this. Stage directions will come back. Stage directions know how much I need them. Please please please please come back... please come back. I'll make it up. So lonely... so alone. So cold.