TOWNSVILLE — After years of dutifully nodding along to corporate jargon and pretending to laugh at his boss's "hilarious" quips, local data analyst Jerry McQuire, 33, had his apple cart upset last Tuesday. He realized that his work family was really just a bunch of folks forced to tolerate each other, and that the 'Human First' banners adorning the office were less about philosophy and more about decor.
Jerry's journey to enlightenment began during his yearly review. Expecting at least a PowerPoint presentation highlighting his countless overtime hours, he was instead handed a pamphlet titled "101 Ways to Keep Loving Your Job!" and a pen that barely worked. The real kicker? The company mascot, a cartoon dollar bill named Rich Richie, was on the cover giving a thumbs up.
"The love in 'Employee Love Week' should have been my first clue," McQuire reflected, staring into the abyss of his half-dead office plant. "It wasn't so much a feeling as it was a 10% discount coupon for the cafeteria's 'Mystery Meat Monday'."
But the breadcrumbs were there: the 'casual' Friday that was casual in name only, the 'anonymous' suggestion box that somehow always traced back to him, and the 'robust' healthcare plan where 'robust' apparently meant 'mostly imaginary'.
"The turning point was when I got an 'urgent' email from HR," McQuire recounted. "Turns out the emergency was them needing me to wear a birthday hat in the break room for Clare from accounting's birthday. Never mind that I was in the middle of preventing a company-wide data breach."
Clutching a resignation letter written on the back of his now-worthless stock options, Jerry made the march to his boss's office. His message was simple: "It's not me, it's definitely you. P.S., my name is Jerry, not Larry."
Post-Jerry's exodus, damage control at CorpInc involved ordering a cake that read, "We're All a Big Family!" The cake was, of course, both gluten-free and taste-free, much like the sentiment behind it.
As for Jerry, he's embarked on a new adventure that involves treating himself as more than just an 'asset.' He's already made headway, starting with sleeping past 6 AM and actually enjoying coffee that isn't brewed from despair and ancient grounds from the communal pot. The future is looking bright, or at least less fluorescent.