Workplace witticisms, job jokes and career quips; who says work can't be a laughing matter?
More Like Deadberg
“Ladies and gentlemen, the very funny Paul Yancy!” the announcer thundered as the kid stepped onto the beer-varnished stage. He was fat, dark-haired, and starting to sweat. It was 12:35, Tuesday night.
Ice and Ibuprofen
It was dark here, before they lit the fire. On the only place to stand on this horrible little hill, it showed us that the porcelain of the floor very much matched, much to our surprise, the walls, the ceiling and our whole little world. Our faces shown back at us, eyes big like saucepans and wretched little mouths, smiling in the dim glow. Everywhere, all around us but where our shadows fell, the crowd of us, laughing.
Memories From My First Job
There once was a time when I worked a less, how shall I say, rewarding job. Like many people, my first venture into the workforce was at a local grocery store. I was sixteen, a sophomore in high school, and looking for money. So, I turned to the "we hire everyone" mentality of the local store. They signed me on as a bag boy — wait, I'm sorry — front service personnel. I'm sure the fancy title was intended to raise the morale among our measly ranks in exchange for paying minimum wage. Fancy title or not, I was now part of the working world.
I sat at the bar staring at the scratchcard in my hand. It had been a while since anyone had come to me with a paying job, I was down to my last $50. Enough to keep the drinks flowing for an afternoon at the dirtiest drinking hole I knew and this $2 scratchcard. The odds were not great but it’s not like I had anything left to lose. I could smell his aftershave before I could hear him, he strode up to me like he owned the place.
Will Pay Handsomely
Henry thumbed through the Help Wanted section of the newspaper thoughtfully. He chewed the end of his highlighter as he scanned the different columns looking for something that might pop out at him.
To Pinpoint a Punchline
Abigail was walking down Seventh Avenue in New York City when something tripped her step, making her spill her artisanal latte. It was a little black book on the sidewalk. What’s this?, thought Abigail. She opened the book and in thumbing through the pages, she realized that it was a comedy notebook. No name was assigned to the book, but the inside cover of the book the owner had scribbled a note that promised a reward of $20,000 to return the book. Holy Moly!, Abigail thought to herself, Returning this book could pay for a lifetime of free lattes! The only problem was, there was no name or number listed in the book.
It’s a fucking Monday and I’m so fucking hungry. I know I sound like an ironic Garfield T-shirt being worn by a 45-year-old white man who has a Blue Lives Matter bumper sticker but it -is- fucking Monday and I -am- fucking hungry.
The Clown Downtown
Donnie was riding the train into work as he usually does. He didn’t want to look up at the grey skies or check his notifications. His mind was on the unfinished work from last week and he had a fairly sore head from his weekend just past. Upon arriving at his station to change trains with only a few minutes to spare, he grabbed himself a coffee. His home-made instant coffee from his breakfast at home was not even close to returning him to a corporate cog again on this Monday morning.
How the Stars Aligned
"Come in, Mr. Brooks, and have a seat. Thanks for coming in. We have interviewed many candidates for the position, but none have been the right fit. As you can imagine, this is a fiercely competitive industry, and we are at the top of our game. Did you bring your resume?"
A Fickle Fortune
Something’s not right. Why is there a camera crew here? I slow my approach and narrow my eyes. A quick scan of the area reveals that everything else seems to be in place. The cashiers are scanning and bagging items like they do day in, day out. There’s a soda can pyramid advertising discount cola next to a complex, ten-foot toilet paper structure that, while impressive, makes me wonder how anyone could grab a pack without causing the entire tower to collapse, Jenga-style.
Little Black Book
“It’s a great idea, Chau. But you probably couldn’t get it patented. And it wouldn’t work just to go for protection in the US, because most of the textiles it would be used for are produced overseas. Best try to sell your idea to an established manufacturer.”
Elephant in the Room
FADE IN: INT. OFFICE BUILDING - DAY BILL FLANNAGAN sits in a chair waiting to be called in for a job interview. He's reading a magazine and is professionally dressed.