Sorry, dear reader! Simply by reading this post you've unleashed an ancient Sumerian curse which has now condemned all your future children, both male and female, to be named Ambrose.


Come to Me, My Severance

Menken, thanks for sitting down with me today. I’ll try to make this brief. As you know, two years ago I asked you to come up with three ideas for tasty stir-in suggestions to list on the side of one of our company’s six boxed macaroni and cheese products, Shells A-Cheesin’. Since December of 2008 you’ve had absolutely no other duties, no other responsibilities but to generate those three ideas, which you frankly could have safely lifted from any number of other boxed macaroni and cheese products, or perhaps spent all of five minutes on the internet to compile. Last Friday, you finally presented me with those ideas on company letterhead, the summation of twenty-three months of work. One of the stir-in concepts is certainly usable, while another sounds frankly unappetizing, with the third suggestion being Shells A-Cheesin’ itself. This catastrophically insulting effort on your part naturally deserves a swift firing, but I don’t want to be too hasty, for I believe we are presented here with a situation that calls for more--in fact this may be a rare opportunity, given the utterly dizzying atrociousness and absurdity of your failure, to commence a firing on a scale heretofore unattempted at either Foods A-Vendin’ Incorporated or any other S & P 500 company I am personally familiar with. So I’ve brought you in today to get your input on this, for it really needs to be done right. The boys in Accounting suggested we hire a fake doctor to come to your cubicle to tell you that the results of your tests are the worst possible and that you only have six months to live--followed immediately by me firing you on the spot with obvious full cognizance of your impending end, thereby demonstrating to one and all that your incompetence is so vast and all-encompassing that nothing, nothing at all, can save you from instant and remorseless unemployment. I also thought I could simply harangue you verbally for hours in the hallway before finally delivering a profane death blow, only to stage a show of sympathy by re-hiring you after you beg for forgiveness, after which I would suddenly deliver a double whammy by firing you a second time the moment I return your key card, revealing to one and all that I was merely setting you up for a bonus helping of get-the-hell-out all along. These are both workable ideas but I’m not too worried about the budget for this, as we’ll obviously be saving $30 on your birthday party in March. To that end, I was pondering the construction of an ominous ring of fire in the east courtyard; there, you would be tied to a metal pole of some sort and fired via loudspeaker as the entire company watches in amazement while through a cleverly crafted trap door, a perfect effigy would rise quickly to replace the real you at the crucial moment when the fire has eaten through the grass to engulf your feet, and this dummy would burn horrifically while the deceived onlookers weep and scream. Call it overly avant garde, but I feel the spectacle of a ring of fire and all it suggests would surely create a dismissal for the ages, and of course you would merely be escorted through a secret tunnel directly to the unemployment office, safe and sound, with the staff mistakenly mourning for nothing but a few sandbags tied together with your face Photoshopped onto a pumpkin or something. My last idea involves Cheap Trick, whose members I happen to know personally, having gone to medical school with them. Imagine, if you will, a so-called “benefit concert” staged in our very own parking lot, with not only our entire company but everyone in the building invited to hear the band rock through ninety quality minutes of both classics and new material, and the big surprise at the end, revealed by Robin Zander himself as he stands at the mike, is that the people benefiting from the concert is all of us except you, because we’re being relieved of your presence effective immediately, “your ass being shipped UPS in a cardboard box directly to Loser Land,” as Robin will put it to the cheering throng. And there’s an actual symbolic cardboard box that descends from the arm of a crane! Sounds ambitious, I know, but I think we can pull it off! So go back to your desk and we’ll agree to keep this between ourselves for now, and tomorrow will be showtime. And when you come back from lunch today, let me know what they have down in the cafeteria. If it’s anything involving corn, I don’t want to know about it. Corn is the yellow whore.