Monday, May 13, 2013

Guest Letter: How Pens Relate to the Nazis

*Spousal Unit works at a medical supply company. He sent this letter last week to the woman who orders company supplies. He really did.*

Hi Michelle,

I had a question about the pens that we have. Well, it's really more of an issue. You see, earlier today, I took a pen out of the supply closet for use on an Official Document. This document was not time sensitive, though it could very well have been. I could have had need to write a note on an important certificate for a doctor's signature, or I could have needed a pen to correct an authorization request to Medicaid. What if the patient's house had been on fire and I needed to sign an attestation in order for Medicare to cover replacement equipment, but the patient was cold, hungry, and without their medical equipment until I could do so? I hope I've impressed upon you the gravity of this situation.

So I took a pen from the supply closet for use on an Official Document. At this point, I'd like to refer you to the attachment called "Thing 1." Go ahead, I'll wait.


This is the very pen that I selected from the supply closet. I was right next to the fax machine, and all I had to do was sign my Official Document. This fine, blue, COMFORT STIC. pen from Staples was supposed to be the tool with which I endorsed the veracity and urgency of my Official Document. However, as you may have intuited, things did not go as planned.

Being in a rush, with a sense of urgency surpassing "pressing" and falling short of "panic," I went to remove the cap from the pen to affix my signature to my Official Document. I would now like to refer you to attachment "Thing 2."


As you can see, the cap and the point remained a bonded pair, like so many doves who mate for life, never to be separated. Like two tragic youths whose love is forbidden by society, leading to a series of events that culminates in their deaths, one accidental, the other out of grief. Indeed, ball point, ball point, wherefore art thou, ballpoint? Needless to say, this is unacceptable. This does not live up to our office values. I'm sure none of us need to be reminded of the 5 Official Values? One of them is "Quality."

I approached our office clerk. I asked her if she was responsible for ordering these drab pen imitations. She said that yes, the responsibility was hers. I then rebuked her in a very strong fashion, letting her know my displeasure with our office hardware. She then backtracked and said that, in fact, Michelle is responsible for ordering the pens. She says that you, Michelle, let our office clerk know which pens to order. She said that she, the office clerk, was merely following orders. (I won't go into details, but I told her that "only following orders" was found to be a vile and cowardly argument used by the Nazis).

And so we arrive at the point of this memorandum. Michelle, I have found the pens to be less than satisfactory. How can our company achieve its vision if the pens of the lowest workers are literally falling to pieces? Are we to be so ill-equipped that even the slowest, albino alligator could work more efficiently than an office full of our best and brightest? This supply closet serves everyone at the company, from field staff in nursing and respiratory therapy, to the underappreciated customer service representatives. It even serves the Vice President and the company President and CEO!

No, we will not stand for this. We must not stand for this. We, the workers, demand office supplies that will facilitate, not hinder, our productivity. Our pens must draw the most clear and even lines, free from blotches! Our paper must come in neatly stacked reams, easy to open when refilling the copier, but not so heavy as to invite workplace injuries. Our bathrooms must be stocked with the finest silken soaps! And our pens, our pens. They must be worthy of the men and women who hold them. Was Excalibur not worthy of the Once and Future King? Was Lucille not worthy of B.B. King? Was the bat not worthy of the Great Bambino?

I implore you, for the sake of our company, please reconsider the Staples COMFORT STIC. The British Isles will not be ruled by lesser kings and queens, the blues will not be played by inferior instruments, and baseballs will not be hit with rotting sticks. Nor will our Official Documents be signed with trifling pens. This injustice, for I name it so, has now been recognized. It must now be corrected.

The ball(point), madame, is in your court.

Sincerely,

Spousal Unit

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