The office is not unlike any other manager’s office. It welcomes you with a certain aura, an aura that will later have you claim that you entered with a certain sense of foreboding. It is with that sense of foreboding that Cedric enters the office.
The manager is the picture of sinister. To complete the part he is going to play in this tale, he is bedecked with a tie sporting the now immortalized line, “Do you feel lucky?” It is only immortalized for the simple reason that he has made it a point to shove it into countless employees’ faces.
No one knows where he picked it up from.
The word around the office is that he actually had the tie made personally. And that the guy that put it together, the tailor, quit the business immediately after that lest he soiled the reputation of the trade with that move.
It’s a little known fact that Clint Eastwood uses the line, “Do I feel lucky?” in Dirty Harry, the same line is used in countless other movies but that’s neither here nor there.
Cedric is here and he can’t imagine why on earth the boss is looking at him like that. An expression he can not quite place until he is engaged in a conversation.
“I say, you look like something the cat dragged in last week after having its way with it…”
That’s the boss. He never stops short with words if he believes he has an arsenal. And to add insult to injury he seems to wait for an answer at such awkward moments. Cedric tries to find something to say, but he is bailed out by the manager.
“Seriously man, you look like crap. If you can’t handle your drink you shouldn’t drink it…the beer, because clearly you can not handle your drink, can you? A sensible employee would have called in sick or something. Unless of course you are short of sick days.”
Cedric does the only thing he can do at that point. He starts to play with his tie. It’s a nice tie with dots spewed all over. It’s the kind of tie you would play with if you were given to wearing ties and actually got into an office such as this.
The boss is rumbling in the background.
“…so, I find myself asking, what is wrong with this chap? Does he feel lucky? Cedric, you need to ask yourself, do I feel lucky?”
There they were, those hideous words that possessed many implications. And now, yet again Cedric runs to his tie, it seems to have stuck itself firmly to his shirt. It doesn’t want to play fair. It’s a good thing, because at that moment his mouth decides it’s been on leave way too long and now is the moment for its comeback!
“Well, errr, sirrr…” such is the situation when not everything is working as it should. The brain is weak, but the mouth is willing.
“It’s alright Cedric, just take the day off. I am not a mean person. I am a kind person. Many people don’t realize this but…there’s a fountain of kindness welling up within me. Practically waiting to explode.”
Inspired words one would think, so why is Cedric disturbed?
It could be the fact that it’s a long spiel of sorts.
It could also be the boss’ hand placement as he says this.
Did he just do the LL Cool J lip licking thing?
A question that will have to go unanswered because our hapless hero darts out of the office. He doesn’t even bother with picking his belongings from the cubicle lest his boss changes his mind before he makes it out of the office….or worse still says he was kidding.
He does stop briefly by the receptionist’s desk. He figures he will give her a piece of his mind.
And then, all too late, he realizes that his oral capacities have gone AWOL. He cusses. It’s internal. He just can’t seem to get a word out right now.
As the doors of the lift close he is almost certain that the office messenger and the tea girl are talking about him when they say, “…he looks like he slept at some vigil. And forgot to freshen up!
He gets to his car. No puncture. Yet!
As he drives out he heads for the one place he can take refuge at a time like this. At ten in the morning before he sees his girlfriend.
He goes home…