How To: Celebrate Holidays in the Office

As we all know, we live in a Christian-dominated society. Christianity is the leviathan corporation that refuses to acknowledge there are other games in town. Sort of like Comcast and cable.

Look around during Easter and Christmas. You’ll see everything decked out in red and white, bunnies and Cadbury eggs. It’s all around, suffocating you in the forced glee of the holiday season, all with the subtle reminder in the background that this is Jesus Land and, as a non-Christian, you’re going to burn in Hell. But hey, enjoy the candy canes and creme eggs while you’re here!

But never fear, dear reader, I know your pain. I’ve lived in The South for a good proportion of my life, and I know the existential, gut-wrenching chaos and yearning for the abyss that it inspires. On the flip side, I know that there are good places in the world, filled with good people who have the ability to read, and don’t fry every ounce of food that goes into their drooling, gaping maws. And thus, I know there is goodness in the world, and how to combat the bad.

And, while I’d like nothing more than to write a guide about how to celebrate Ramadan, the Hajj, Diwali, the Vernal Equinox, or the Bacchnalia in your office, but short of sacrifices and traveling to the desert, I know nothing about any of them. What I do know, though, is Judaism. And thus, in honor of the rapidly-approaching onset of Pesach, I present you with a handy how-to guide on how to celebrate holidays in an office environment.

For your added enjoyment, please read this in the voice of Troy McClure:

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April Fool’s Day

From: Dianne Clarkson
Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 12:03 PM
To: _AGING
Subject: Wait List

Good afternoon everyone,

As you are all aware, we’re doing a great job of keeping up with the wait list. I’d like to thank Rachel, Holly, and Dana for their superb help in this process, and I hope that we can keep it up.

As for an update, we still have twenty spaces open in our Family Caregiver Program, but around a hundred people on the list for services. Now, it’s a fact of the game that people pass away while on the wait list, so it is very important that you keep on making those calls to keep our list up to date!! I am NOT saying that anyone is slacking off, just reminding everyone that they can continue to chip in ;).

Thanks again to everyone who has helped so much so far.

Dianne Clarkson
Director, Family Caregiver Program

From: Rachel Dillard
Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 12:10 PM
To: Dianne Clarkson; _AGING
Subject: RE: Wait List

hi everyone

Thanks for the help – I appreciate it more than you know.

keep on keeping on!!!

From: Holly MacDonald
Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 12:11 PM
To: Rachel Dillard; _AGING
Subject: RE: RE: Wait List

I can make some more calls if you want. Have any open for Williamson?

Holly MacDonald
Case Worker

From: Aaron Simon
Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 12:15 PM
To: Dianne Clarkson; _AGING
Subject: RE: Wait List

Hello everyone,

We’re going about handling the wait list in a very, ah, inefficient manner. While I appreciate that all of you are working from the very human emotions such as ‘sympathy’ and ‘care for fellow humans,’ I do not like to conduct business with such things in mind. They are road blocks in the way of progress; children’s toys marring an otherwise perfect garden. More importantly, they are erroneous ways of viewing the situation.

We should be thinking of the wait list not in terms of individuals, but as numbers. Cogs, perhaps. The excess of people on the wait list is a problem, and I should remind you that we do not coddle problems, we eliminate problems.

I know a man who might be able to offer his services. It is for the best that I do not mention his name, for that would compromise his cover in our country. However, he is a friend of mine. He is a problem solver.

Dianne, all you have to do is give me the word and we can eliminate the problem.

I am even certain that he would do this pro bono, as he is a little out of practice when it comes to eliminating problems, and might be called upon to do so by his employer at any time.

Eagerly anticipating your reply,

Aaron Simon
Problem Solver, Enrollment Coordination Specialist

From: Dianne Clarkson
Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 3:24 PM
To: Aaron Simon
Subject: RE: RE: Wait List

Aaron,

I’m not sure what you’re talking about, but if you are talking about what I think you are talking about, nice joke, but it’s not April Fool’s Day yet. Man, you are one sick puppy. LOL

Dianne Clarkson
Director, Family Caregiver Program

From: Aaron Simon
Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2011 3:45 PM
To: Dianne Clarkson
Subject: RE: RE: RE: Wait List

Dianne,

I assure you, I am not joking.

I do, however, realize the moral and ethical problems you could conceivably have about this endeavor, and thus, I’m taking the matter into my own hands. If anything should happen, so be it. However, we must think of the good of the organization, and in this case, the good of the organization entails keeping up a facade of a modicum of efficiency. And, in my attempt to be a valid addition to this organization, I’ve determined that I can use my contacts in a way that helps us attain that efficiency. To wit, I have forwarded the wait list to my associate.

I’d suggest forgetting that these e-mails happened.

Aaron Simon
Problem Solver

From: Chris Flynn
Sent: March 31, 2011 8:50 PM
To: Aaron Simon
Subject: What the Hell?

Dude, why did you send me an Excel spreadsheet? Wait list? What the hell is a wait list?

Why am I getting e-mails from people asking me to stop whatever it is “Aaron told you to do”?

What are you doing down there, man? You need to get out of Tennessee before you lose it.

From: Aaron Simon
Sent: March 31, 2011 9:01 PM
To: Chris Flynn
Subject: RE: What the Hell?

Dude, just go with it. I told them I was hiring a hit man to cut down on people waiting for services in our program.

Best. Prank. Ever!

Dunno how they got your e-mail addy though. Guess they’ve figured out how to actually see what I’m doing on the work computer.

Once again, just roll with it.

From: Chris Flynn
Sent: March 31, 2011 9:10 PM
To: Aaron Simon
Subject: RE: RE: What the Hell?

What? No. That’s insane. How are you not fired?

From: Aaron Simon
Sent: March 31, 2011 9:15 PM
To: Chris Flynn
Subject: RE: RE: What the Hell?

Jewish, man! They can’t touch me!

AAAAAHAHAHAHHAHAHA

From: James Gottfried
Sent: April, 1, 2011 8:13 AM
To: Aaron Simon
Subject: Your Latest Work
Attachment: notice_of_termination.doc

Aaron,

I suggest sending out an e-mail to Aging, with me copied, alerting them to your April Fool’s joke before 9:00 AM. If you do not, I’ll sign that attachment up there, forward it to Ted, and we’ll start procedure to have you fired within the day.

And yes, I am serious about this; Dianne, Holly, and Tasha were calling me until midnight last night about how you were a serial killer. I haven’t had any sleep, and the only reason I’m functional now is because I have a coffee maker in my office.

I look forward to seeing your e-mail shortly.

James Gottfried
Executive Director

From: Aaron Simon
Sent: April, 1, 2011 8:17 AM
To: _AGING
Cc: James Gottfried
Subject: April Fool’s!

April Fool’s Day! I got you all so good!

The best AF jokes are the ones the day before!

Aaron Simon
Hopefully Still Employed

From: James Gottfried
Sent: April, 1, 2011 8:30 AM
To: Aaron Simon
Subject: RE: April Fool’s!

Good.

James Gottfried
Executive Director: Rachel Dillard

A Modest Request

Dear President Obama,

Let me begin by stating that, sure, I disagree with some of the legislation you’ve either pushed forward, or allowed to become law during your tenure in office; but that’s to be expected (I’d hope) since I have a fully-functioning and critical mind – as trained by years of publicly-funded education, both here and in Europe. Overall, and especially considering the alternatives during the 2008 election, I’m very happy when it comes to where my vote went. I’d go far as to state that you’re in the same league as Clinton, at least in terms of moderation in government and your overall sanity. (I haven’t heard you state that you’re on a mission from the Divine, and I hope I never do.)

So, all that said, this request might seem to be a bit, ah, disingenuous, but I assure you, it is not.

In light of the current political atmosphere, also taking into consideration the level of discourse found in America’s talking heads and message boards, I humbly request that you issue a Presidential order that would put me into exile.

Obviously, as this is a request, and you have never heard from me before, please allow me to further take advantage of your attention by suggesting a setting. (In doing so, I reference for precedence a work of fiction: The ending to Huxley’s Brave New World.)

I suggest France. I’ve been there, and I find their climate, food, coffee, and educated (if not employed) populace agreeable to my tastes. (I’d suggest England, but I don’t think the Tories would have me.) Would it be possible for you to set something up with Sarkozy? I know, your predecessor was more of a Sarkozy guy, but I’m sure you two could come to an agreement. Lille is nice. I could handle Lille. Or Marseilles. Anywhere but Paris, as the people are snobs, and the city has a less-than-great odor.

I’ve been driven to this point by a simple, logical conclusion: Donald Trump is going to run for President. Further, I believe he could win. Not that he’s qualified for governance at all, but The Apprentice is very popular, and Trump could easily fund a couple of Presidential campaigns.

To paraphrase Churchill: Democracy’s not great, but it’s the best we have. By this token, it is a fact that the vast majority of those of my fellow Americans who watch reality television – such as The Apprentice – are given a vote. This is an inalienable right, and I am not suggesting it be done away with. However, this translates to every Joe Six-Pack who would fail a citizenship test being able to control the way the government works. Further, a good number of these people are able to think, and yet – YET – might believe that Trump would be able to lead a country because he leads a company. Further, a good number of those people believe teachers make more than $90,000 a year and get off work at 3:00. Even further, some Americans believe you are a Kenyan – Trump included.

This makes me weep, because these are the same people who believe that international relations boils down to threatening allies as well as enemies, and that “Saudi Arabia exists because we allow it to.” (Trump’s words, though they sound like the reasoning the rednecks at my high school used to deploy.) There is also the distinct possibility in my mind that these people would elect Trump and, of course, Tea Party Congressmen who believe Jefferson et. al. were demigods and that the Constitution is infallible. They could be led to believe that Trump is best for them, and then, in months, we have the equivalent of a non-murderous Patrick Bateman in the Oval Office.

This thought is too much for me to bear.

I’d become an ex-pat, but don’t want to marry anyone right now, and am not wealthy enough to live the life I want to live. (Read: Lounge around reading books all day.) I’d seek asylum, but any country, save Israel, would turn me down–and, you know, rockets and suicide bombings, so that’s out of the question.

So I could renounce my citizenship, but by my reckoning, I’d have to exist in international waters, floating around on some large raft sort of thing and stealing coconuts from deserted islands as I laze on by them. But, frankly, I like the Internet too much for that to happen in my life.

Thus, I come to you, Mr. President, with my request. It’s nothing personal; I like you, and you might be my favorite President, save for FDR or Teddy Roosevelt (who was an unquestionable badass). It’s just that I can’t take the possibility that Trump would lead the country like a corporation. Nor can I accept the possibility that Palin would run the country and turn it into Jesus and Gun Land. It’s enough to give me nightmares, and now that I’ve put it in writing, I don’t expect to sleep for a week.

Do people even get exiled anymore? No matter. We can work it out. You could accuse me of… oh, sedition. That’s romantic, isn’t it? Chicks dig seditionaries, right? No one ever gets busted for that anymore… Oh, I could write a best-selling memoir about the trial, and then I could live out my days in a villa in Marseilles! You and Michelle and the kids (and why the fuck not, Biden) could stay there. We’d go yachting!

Whaddya say? One slip of paper, one order of exile, and one signature. It’s the best way I know of to make me a happy (soon-to-be-ex) American. Hell, I’m not even proposing that you protect public school teachers; or save NPR from attacks. You know, the important stuff. All I’m asking is that you exile me. That’s it.

I don’t want to live in Trumpland, USA.

Yours sincerely,

Aaron Simon