Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Office Abuse

     “Darn it!” Brady kicked the copier just as Patrick walked into the printing room.
     “Whoa, calm down.” Patrick placed his hand on Brady’s shoulder. “No need for such violence.”
     Brady mashed a few buttons on the control console with no results. “I’m going to be late for a meeting because this blasted machine decided to get jammed right when I need to make copies of my presentation!”
     Patrick pushed himself between Brady and the copier right before he kicked it again.
     “It’s time for you to take a deep breath, Brady. Getting angry at the copier won’t help it work any better. If you want it to respect you, you must first respect it.” Patrick patted the machine as if it were a wounded animal.
     “Unbelievable,” said Brady. “I’m about to miss my meeting and you want me to respect this hunk of junk.”
     “Shhhhh… there’s no need for such language.” Brady put his hands on each side of the copier, as though he were blocking its ears. “Maybe you should try being nice to it for a change and see what happens.”
     Brady was about to speak again when Patrick raised a finger to silence him. Then Patrick leaned over the top of the machine and softly stroked its lid like he was petting a dog.
     “You’re a good copier… yes you are. You work so hard and put up with a lot of abuse, but we all know this office couldn’t run without you. You make copies all day long without so much as a thank you. I know you deserve better. Such a good copier…”
     Brady was ready to start kicking Patrick instead of the machine. He was sure his coworker had completely lost it, but a moment later the copier roared to life. Light flashed out of its lid and perfect copies of Patrick’s presentation began filling the output tray. Brady’s mouth dropped open in disbelief.
     “Here you are,” said Patrick, handing him the copies.
     “Thanks,” said Brady taking them out of his hand.
     Patrick nodded toward the machine. “I’m not the one you should be thanking.”
     Brady looked over his shoulder to make sure no one else was watching. “Um, thanks… copier.” Then he rolled his eyes and stomped out of the room.
     As soon as he was gone, the copier made a beeping noise.
     “No, it’s not your fault,” said Patrick, petting the machine again. “He’s just got a bad attitude. Just remember that you’re better than that, and you don’t need to take any revenge.”
     Seconds later, they heard Brady’s scream echo throughout the office.
     Patrick shook his head. “If only the electric stapler was so forgiving.”

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