Tag Archives: honesty

Proud sponsor of the American Scream

bank-robberI’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: What of Mediocre Fred?

For newbies, Mediocre Fred is a decent, honest, hard-working guy. He doesn’t cheat on his taxes, obeys the law and is kind to small furry creatures. As such, he’s not exactly rewarded like a paragon of the American way.

Here in America we base our entire system of government on one simple principle: No freeloaders. You have to work for a living. As a nation we abhor the notion of those who work the system to get the promised land of freebies without pulling their own weight. Well, at least on the bottom end of the scale.

Mediocre Fred has worked every week of his life since he was 16. When still in school he worked part-time. After graduating with his high school diploma, he went full-time and has never looked back.

Over the decades Mediocre Fred has always worked. He’s had no pension, 401k plan, health insurance, vacation or paid days off. He just works. And when his fellow workers tried to unionize and the company closed and bulldozed the store and built a new non-union store across the street, Mediocre Fred always seemed to land on his feet. He’d just get a new job and keep his nose to that grindstone.

That’s what you’re supposed to do, right?
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Lying About My Intellectual Dishonesty

urban-decayOh you humans, you amuse me so!

You might be tempted to to say, “Et tu, brute?” but not so fast! Don’t forget that I exercised my God-given right to opt-out of the human race several years ago. I am not one of you.

These days you creatures are merely a fascinating field of study. You do know how to hold my interest, though. Don’t forget that I specialize in negativity.

There are so many branches of human negativity to choose from but dishonesty holds a special place in my heart.

What is a lie? The dictionary says it’s an “intentionally false statement.” It’s like the opposite of truth.

Ex: Max eats the last cookie in the jar. His mother asks, “Did you eat the cookie.” Max says, “No.”

Let’s say Max has cookie crumbs on his hand, face, shirt, and there’s a trail of crumbs leading from him to the cookie jar. That’s where forensic science comes into play, but that’s another story.

“Looks like this suspect,” the detective says while dramatically removing his sunglasses, “is ready to … crumble.” AAAAAEEEEEIIIIIIIII!
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The Ingrate Pignorate

contractThis was intended to be one of those oh so clever moments. I pumped the word “sales” into my thesaurus and was going to clutch in my dirty little fingers veritable proof that “sales” was synonymous with words like deceit, lie, fraud and what not.

Dammit. This thesaurus is defective. I never should have listened to that salesperson who told me it was unabridged.

One time I learned an important lesson about sales. I’ve told this story before but this time I’ll try to tell it shorter and better.

I worked for a big company. They needed to modernize an entire department. The estimated cost of the project, in 1995 dollars, was $25 million. To put that into perspective, later I ended up living in a small town that considered adding a much needed new bridge across a small river at a cost of $15 million in 2004 dollars. So yeah, the project was pretty big.
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Mediocre Fred

mediocre-fredMediocre Fred has been mentioned from time to time on this blog, but he’s never had his own moment in the spotlight. Until now. After all, he’s very mediocre.

Without further ado, I am pleased to introduce… um, wait. What’s his name? Whew. Luckily I have voluminous notes. Oh yeah, Fred.

Fred isn’t exactly the hollowest point in the 20-round magazine. Or something like that. So who is he and why is he a close, personal friend of the blog?

Fred was raised with basic values like decency, honesty and hard work. But he wasn’t particularly gifted in any special areas. He graduated from high school, because that’s what you’re supposed to do, but he didn’t stand out academically or athletically, so no scholarships came his way. His parents were simple working folk and unable to pay his way to college.

He doesn’t lie and his word is his bond. These days that makes him a veritable freak of nature.
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Save The Future Date

1963The year is 2008. You’ve just joined the ranks of hardy souls dotted across the great American fruited plain who are known as entrepreneurs. You go out buy a van for your youngling business and emblazon your stupid company name in colorful graphics on the side. And then, because you want to project an image of stability, you add a little something extra.

“Since 1963.”

Not bad. You’re only lying by 45 years. That’s especially impressive since you haven’t even lived on the planet that long. You don’t need to tell the truth. You’re a small business owner! Actual patience and hard work is for idiots. You earn your money the new-fashioned way.

If you’re going to lie, why play small ball? Go so big and audacious that it’ll never occur to anyone to question the lie. It’s like you’re Darth Vader, your company is the Empire, and the lie is your own personal Death Star. “We’ll blow your wallet up.”

By the way, this is exactly one of the plot points in the movie Sunshine Cleaning. Look it up. I never forget a lie.

In fact, I was so taken by that lie, I decided to get in on that action myself. Check it out.

We are proud to introduce…

Abyss Inc., Corporation, LLC
Since 2042

“Home of the World’s Best Guru.”

You can trust us. We’re only hiding behind at least three different forms of legal constructs. And a handshake.

Oh, shit. I might be doing it wrong. I guess if one is going to lie about the year one should understand the nature of the timeline. Maybe I should have tried 2013. B.C. Before Corporations. The B.C. could be in the fine print. A font size of -12 picas should do it.

Next up: Advertising. And I intend to ape the very, very best. Fast food.
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Staff Infection Meeting

knife-chartI once quit a job over a staff meeting. True story. I’m sure it’s documented here on the blog somewhere, but long story short, they made us on the 6am crew stick around for a 5pm meeting. I asked, “Is it important?” Our managers assured us it was. “You have to be there,” they said.

The meeting started and the first item of business was rolling out birthday cake for our safety director. At 5-fucking-o-clock. It’s not like most of us would be consuming dinner any time soon.

Then, for the icing on the cake, the rest of the hour was consumed by our managers reading memos to us. Line-by-line. Word-by-word. Like we were in kindergarten or something. Memos that had previously been delivered to our inboxes. Memos I had already read on my very own. It was worse than an insult to our intelligence. It was calling us babies.

After the meeting I opted to go back to my desk rather than heading straight home. I sat there and wrote out a memorandum of my own. Perhaps you’ve heard of it. It’s a classic piece of Americana called the letter of resignation. I plopped that puppy on my manager’s desk and then called it day.

Good times.

In another place and another time there was another staff meeting. This one involved the quintessential management tool known as the employee survey.
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Honestly I Do

honest-sadI was out surfing the blogs recently when I caught a real gnarly set:

“If there is anything this blogging journey has taught me, it is to be honest. Not only honest in my life, but honest in my writing as well.” –“Slaying the dragon” from POLYSYLLABIC PROFUNDITIES

Dammit. I’ve been pondering those words ever since. Why did you have to go and make me think? Continue reading →