Sunday October 11th, 2015

The exercise:

Write about: disarray.

With a huge 5-1 win this evening the Blue Jays live to battle another day. That day is tomorrow. Fingers crossed they now have some momentum on their side.

I harvested potatoes this afternoon. Kat's parents were out doing the same in their part of the garden so Max tagged along to help them. It's okay, they had more to do than I did. Plus it let me overhear things like the following:

"This one looks like... Mr. Potato Head!"

I always feel better about laughing at my son when he can't hear me doing it.

Mine:

"Your organization is in disarray."

I hide a laugh behind a cough. At least ten heads turn in my direction. Maybe I could have done that with a little more subtlety. Though to be fair to myself, the... observation caught me off-guard.

"You need solutions," the consultant tells the managers in the crowded room. Which includes me. I'm the most recent to join this level of our... company. I'm still getting used to the title. "Nothing is off limits. No idea is too crazy. So let's hear it."

The silence in the room is as oppressive as it is unsurprising. Of course nobody is going to stick their neck out. Not now. The executioner's job doesn't need to be made any easier.

"Come on, don't be shy. I'm sure each of you has at least one idea on how to set things right. Just shout it out."

The whiteboard on the wall remains blank as the marker in his grip hovers over it. Glances are exchanged behind his back. Somebody needs to say something, that much is understood. Otherwise we might be stuck in here until starvation starts to claim the weakest of the herd.

"Not speaking up is how you guys ended up in this mess! Let's not k-"

"Yeah, I've got an idea," I call out. I'm pretty sure my resume is up to date. I might need to switch out a reference or two after this though. Oh well.

"Awesome! Hit me. Whatcha got?"

"If we are in, as you say, disarray," I say slowly as I struggle to keep the smile from my face, "perhaps we should stop referring to ourselves as an organization."

3 Comments:

Greg said...

I wouldn't say you're laughing at Max, rather you're laughing at his sense of wonderment. He might be a little young to appreciate the subtle argument though :)
I'm glad the Blue Jays (does that get abbreviated to BJs at all by the way? Just remembering the Vancouver Art Gallery abbreviation there for a second) are staging a comeback, and an impressive one if that score is how they intend to continue!
Hmm, I've met consultants like that, and most of the silence was us holding back laughter at how poorly they were performing, so your piece really nails it for me. I do like your narrator's suggestion at the end though, I've had colleagues who would have said exactly that. And probably gotten away with it too.

Disarray
Beelzebobble, dressed in a pink blouse and pink ra-ra skirt, stared at the ranks of massed demons. The pink bow in her hair glittered in the hellish light, and the pink, spring-mounted antennae on her head bobbed back and forth.
"What is this?" she asked, adding a girlish giggle at the end that came off as menacing.
"Oh mighty Lord of Hell," said Sid, who'd had his name stolen by a human warlock a couple of centuries back, "these are all your minions, gathered here to do your bidding."
"They do my bidding anyway," said Beelzebobble. Her sweet face contorted for a moment into a wolfish snarl with as many teeth as a shark. "Consider; when the Lich-lady Elpheseba accidentally put the non-Euclidean Sceptre up for sale on Ebay, did my minions not all do my bidding then and ensure the purchase?"
Sid groaned and stuck his fingers in his bat-like ears. "Bad puns, my Lord? What have I done this time?"
"This is Hell," said Beelzebobble, sounding almost friendly. "Or, to use the old name, Dis."
"We changed it because you kept putting a single guard on the gate and calling them Dysentry," said Sid quickly.
"You also changed the greeting from 'Abandon all hope ye who enter here' to 'Welcome to the Hotel California; you may check out any time you like but you can never leave.'"
"We're collecting members of the Eagles," said Sid sulkily.
"So what I see before me," said Beelzebobble, her saccharine grin warning Sid to put his fingers in his ears in time, "is sweet Disarray."

morganna said...

Follow directions is all I ask

But I guess you can't
Backpack here, jacket there

We're supposed to be going to school
Not trying to win
The Most Disorganized Child Award!

Marc said...

Greg - yes, the problem is very definitely his lack of awareness of the difference between the two :)

And yes, that particular abbreviation has been known to make an appearance :P

Hah, I quite like Beelzebobble. Your description of her is fantastic, and I do appreciate her punniness as well.

Morganna - heh, that sounds like most times I try to get Max out of the house. Not headed for school, obviously, but that doesn't stop him from becoming a chaos machine moments before we have to leave :)