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Occurrence at Our Weekly Meeting

October 5, 2013


I’m beginning my fifth month working as a contractor—a gun for hire, a ronin, applying my skills and abilities against a sometimes daunting workload. As I mentioned in an earlier post (“I Have a New Job” July 13, 2013). I still try to keep myself focused solely on my screen and not take part in any of the conversations that go on around me.

There are times, however, where I am free and encouraged to express myself. One such place is during our Wednesday department meetings. Allow me to recount an anecdote from the meeting that took place last week.

The department supervisor always sends out an email to not only remind us of the work-related gathering, but to also give us a question to ponder and give an answer to when we go around and talk about our workload. The question this time was: If you were cremated, where would you like your ashes spread?

The meeting started immediately with going around the table and having each of us share. The woman to my right said, “Oh, I think the seashore would be nice.” Most people nodded in approval, imagining a tranquil scene with bathing-suit clad islanders gracefully tossing about ash from coconut receptacles—the dust of former human flesh and bone, being scattered in the air, water and sand.

Then it was my turn. I said, “Well, first of all, I’d like to say that this question really burns me up.”

A smattering of giggles and deserved groans were heard. I looked at the supervisor (who has known me for several years) and asked, “Do you remember Sigmund Finklebottom?” (and, yeah, that’s not his real name.)

He nodded his head that he did. (And of course he remembered him. How could he not? Finklebottom was, what Reader’s Digest used to call, “an unforgettable character,” and probably still do—I don’t know, as I haven’t seen an issue in years. This was someone who had caused a great deal of, shall we say, turbulence in my life for many years.)

I said, “I would like to have my ashes scattered liberally over his breakfast cereal.”

The room erupted in a smattering of laughs, a few guffaws, and several shouts of “Ew, gross!” The woman sitting to my left glowered and said, “That’s disgusting!”

Sigh…these people still don’t get me…


From → Blogs

  1. It’s a good job you’ve got us!!

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