Teddy Bear

Jeremy sat hugging his teddy bear to him.

Around him, the room whirled. People ran, yelled. In the next room, there was a pounding sound.

“Jeremy!” someone yelled. Jeremy looked with fear. “Get in here!”

Jeremy stood, clutching the teddy to him. He opened the door, and said, “What’s up, boss?”

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Work Comfort

Lamby sat on the bed, waiting for his owner.

It was a long day of work for Rosa. It was always a long day these days. She finally got home sometime past nine, put her things down, grabbed a bite to eat. Then she walked into the bedroom, stripped off the work clothes, donned her pajamas, lay her head on the pillow. She needed to be up at 6:30 tomorrow, but a few minutes of relaxation before sleep were called for.

Rosa held Lamby. She squeezed lightly, and Lamby let out a little “Baa”. Rosa smiled, did it again, and again. The baas soothed her mind. She hugged Lamby to her, and drifted off to sleep.

Choices

“Boss, can we talk?”

“Sure thing, Marie,” Archie said. “Come in, close the door, have a seat. What’s up?”

“Well, I wanted to apply for the manager position.”

“Great, I think you’d be fantastic.”

“The thing is, my husband and I were talking. It’s getting kind of late – age speaking, I mean – and I think we might try to have a baby.”

“I…see.”

“Yeah.”

“Well, Marie, you know, you can work and still have a child. I mean, we can’t fire you for having a baby,” Archie chuckled.

“No, but, you know, I know it can hurt my chances at the promotion, and make things difficult. I just wanted to, kind of, suss out where you stood on things.”

“Well, you do what you need to. I’m not going to hold you back from continuing the human race.”

“Right, but…”

“But the job? Well, put in your application, and we’ll see.”

“Okay. But having a kid wouldn’t hurt my chances?”

“Put in the application, Marie, and we’ll go from there.”

Marie stood. “Okay,” she said, dejected.

Work Like a Dog

“Ladies and gentlemen,” Darcy called. “You know what day it is?”

“Pancake day?” Wyatt asked.

“Taco day?” Leslie said, his voice hopeful.

“Pay day, finally?” Melody said, bitterness in her voice.

“None of the above!” Darcy said, her smile wide. “It’s Work Like a Dog Day!”

Everyone groaned, and looked around.

“Can we get out of it?” asked Leslie.

“Nope! So, on the floor everyone, and no more words! Barking only!”

“Boss, I really don’t think this is as beneficial as – ”

“No more arguments! Ruff ruff!” Darcy lowered herself to the floor and started to crawl around on all fours.

The rest of the office sighed, and started moving their monitors down.

Memorandum

Dear Employees,

In light of recent events, all further communication will now be done via memo.

Please remember that, when a customer enters the sales area, clothing is not optional. All human rights complaints regarding freedom of expression and freedom of religion remain pending, and until they are resolved, clothing is required.

Please ensure that your desktop workstations are used only for work. Any employee caught self-pleasuring or purchasing video games through online retailers will be chastised once, then fired. Please check your contracts; it’s in there.

Please remember that no pets are allowed on premises, especially avian pets.

All those who are concerned about air quality are welcome to get it tested; we have vetted the possibilities, and will pay for air testing through McCormick’s Air. All concerns about conflict of interest can be directed to HR.

Finally, please keep in mind that we share the air. Those employees coming to work with Ebola are encouraged to use their sick days, receiving forty percent of their pay for staying home.

Thank you. All complaints about this or future memos will be ignored.

Sincerely,

The Management

Back to Work

A break is never long enough, and never really break-y enough.

Everyone remembers when life was better in their youth. And to be fair, school breaks are always trying the limits of everyone’s mind and patience. But as soon as adulthood hits, the breaks become too short, not rejuvenating enough. Exhausting.

Tommy was sitting in work, having just returned from vacation. His eyes were sunken, his mind weary. He had had just enough time off to little the moral numbness recede, but not long enough for to be truly rested. Now he sat, staring at his computer, unable to bring himself to even press the on button.

“Heeeeey Tommy,” Dale said, standing above him with a cup of coffee.

“Oh, hey boss. What’s up?” Tommy said, his voice void of enthusiasm.

“Oh, not much. How was the vacation?”

“It was great. I took a trip to Nova Scotia, saw some lovely sites, and spent three days in a cabin in the woods just reading. I woke up every day to the birds singing. It was fantastic.”

“Sounds wonderful. So listen, we’ve had a bit of a re-organization while you were out, so you’ll be taking over Janine and Chris’s work while they transfer over to finance.”

“Oh, okay. Who’s going to handle the McLaren and Johnson file?”

“You will be. It’ll be a bit of juggling for a bit, but it shouldn’t really mean much more work for you, not to worry. I’ll have the files moved to your desk but this afternoon, okay?”

Tommy’s eyes had glazed over, processing this.

“Okay, Tommy?”

“Oh, yes, sorry boss. Sounds fine.”

“Here, let me get the computer for you,” Dale leaned forward and pressed the power button. The computer chirped it’s faux-happy start-up sound as Dale walked off, leaving Tommy to stare a thousand miles away.

Pi Time

Carlie looked down at her watch. 3:13. On more minute.

The second hand was ticking away, currently on the 2. Then one dot later. And another. And another. And another.

Carlie looked up at her screen, then back down. It was nearing the 4. Almost there. And it was! She smiled. Getting closer.

She looked back at her screen and typed away. She needed to get her report done, her boss had been after her for the past two hours. But still, this was too important.

Looking down, the second hand was on the 11. So close, she had almost missed it. She waited. Tick. Tick. Tick.

And there it was! Pi time, on pi day. She let a little cheer out, then started working again.

Then the thought occurred to her: I should have celebrated earlier, probably at 1:59. And maybe at 1:59 and 26 seconds. Really, though, 2015 would have been the best time.

Still, she was pleased with her victory, and though she knew her coworkers wouldn’t appreciate it, she still smiled at them.

Panic on the Workfloor

“PANIC,” Doug shouted through the workspace. He stood up at his computer threw his papers in the air, and started to run. He ran around his desk, then around the whole work pod, then over toward the windows. He ran to his boss’s office, pounded on the door, then ran off to his boss’s boss’s door and pounded there.

People started to look up from their computers, taking out their headphones, wondering what was up. Doug kept running.

“PANIC PANIC PANIC,” he shouted as he ran, flying past HR and down the hallway to IT. He stopped at the end of the door, shouted, “PANIC,” then ran back.

By now, people were returning to their computers. Doug ran around for a few more minutes, shouting and grabbing peoples’ shoulders. They looked at him, nodded, and kept working.

Finally he settled down, and returned to his seat. He set his alarm for an hour and a half, ready to get people up and going again.

Compliment

Edwin looked up from his computer.

“Edwin, compliment me,” Mark commanded.

“Um. You’re ugly, stupid, and just a bit boring.”

“What?” Mark said. “I asked for a compliment, you ass.”

“That’s about the best I can do, Mark. And that is a compliment, as far as I’m concerned. You should hear I was I really think of you.”

Mark sighed aloud and walked away, angry.

Retirement

When Eldon retired the first time, everyone gathered round, cheered for him, drank to his health, and offered their best wishes.

When Eldon retired the second time, everyone gathered round, a little uncertain; they drank to his health, gave him a fancy watch, and joked about this one really going to take.

When Eldon retired the third time, a smaller crowd gathered, drinking to his health and making jokes about how the third time would be a charm, and hadn’t he gotten enough of their goodwill already?

Eldon was unable to retire a fourth time, as he was laid off during the company’s downsizing. Everyone was surprised when their pension fund collapsed, though Eldon had been warning about the difficulties in accessing the funds for years.

Eldon got a new job at a fast food restaurant, and hated the last few years of his life, but at least he was alive.