copyright © 2008 Jeff Goode

Disgust Discussed

by Jeff Goode

(A conference room. Corporate meeting in progress:)

SECRETARY. And that brings us to the final item on the agenda to be discussed: Our new line of anger management products.

CEO. Is there anybody here from Anger Management?

SECRETARY. Willoughby is on the way over — running a little late.

HR. As usual.

VP. Would you lay off, H.R?

SECRETARY. Do you want to wait for Willoughby?

CEO. No, I’ve got a plane to catch. Let’s discuss this and wrap things up here.

SECRETARY. So what has been the general reaction to their progress in this quarter?

HR. Overall excellent.

VP. Fantastic.

CEO. And the new product lines?

VP. They’re terrific. Profits are up. Costs are down. Customer satisfaction is above expectations.

HR. Considering they’re angry to begin with.

VP. The only negative to report is a high-level of work-place stress in that division.

HR. But that’s to be expected. They’ve been under a lot of pressure over in Anger Management.

CEO. That’s true. After the firings last year. And then the shootings. The whole department has been in a shambles, let’s face it.

HR. Willoughby survived the blood-letting… and then the bloodshed… and was appointed to replace Saundra Markins — may she rest in peace — and tasked with turning things around by the end of this quarter.

VP. Which is pretty much what we’re seeing in this eval.

CEO (glances at watch) Well, I’m sure a positive assessment will go a long way toward improving morale over there. Be sure to send Willoughby a copy of the minutes, along with my congratulations. Meeting is adjourned.

(CEO exits.)

SECRETARY. Are we still noting attendance in the minutes?

HR. Everyone’s here except for Willoughby.

(Enter WILLOUGHBY, looking stressed.)

WILLOUGHBY. Hi! I’m so sorry I’m late.

VP. Willoughby, we were just talking about you.

SECRETARY. Congratulations.

HR. You’re late.

WILLOUGHBY. I know, I’m sorry. But we’ve been working very, very, incredibly hard over in Anger since the last quarter. And I’m eager to get your feedback on the progress we’ve made.

VP. That won’t be necessary.

WILLOUGHBY. No, no, I know it’s been a rough couple of quarters, but we welcome the criticism. There’s always room for improvement. (sits down, nervous) Ahem… So… What has been the reaction to progress in our division, overall?

VP. That’s been discussed, Willoughby.

WILLOUGHBY. Did you say…?

HR. Discussed.


VP. Of course.

WILLOUGHBY. You can’t mean that all of you…

HR. Discussed it, Willoughby.

WILLOUGHBY. Disgusted?!

VP. Thoroughly.

WILLOUGHBY. But our profits–

HR. Discussed.

WILLOUGHBY. Customer satisfaction?

SECRETARY. Discussed.

WILLOUGHBY. Our progress in every area across the board–

HR. Discussed! Discussed! It’s all been discussed, Willoughby! Now would you get out of my way, the meeting’s over.

SECRETARY. It’s all in the minutes, Willoughby. It’s all been discussed. I’ll fax you a copy first thing.


VP. Yes.

SECRETARY. (worried) Are you all right?

WILLOUGHBY. Oh my God!! I’ve been working my ass off all year. I survived a workplace shootout, and the reaction to my work has been DISGUST?!

VP. Oh, uh, no, wait, Willoughby, I think you misunderstand.

HR. Not "disgust" like "distaste". "Discussed" like, "It’s over, through, finished."

WILLOUGHBY. So now you’re firing me?! Oh my GOD!! No! (pulls out a gun) Noooo!

VP. Wait!

HR. Gun!!

(WILLOUGHBY opens fire, and keeps shooting until the gun is empty, killing everyone else in the room.)

WILLOUGHBY. That’s what I think of your evaulation!!

(WILLOUGHBY notices the Secretary’s minutes and reads:)

"4:45. Anger Management performance discussed. Overall excellent." Uh oh.

(WILLOUGHBY looks around at the dead bodies, reads again:)

"In attendance. All, except Willoughby."

(WILLOUGHBY sets down the minutes and backs slowly out of the room.)

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