In 1994, I started an associate editor position for Hunter Publishing, which published trade magazines.  It was okay, but the stuff I had to write was pretty dry.

That summer, the office complex held a volleyball tournament.  I was on the Hunter team (I’m an incredibly average player).  We made it to the championship game.

To drum up company spectator interest in the game, I wrote a “reminder” memo about the event. It was humorous, and I gave all the players funny nicknames.  It was a break from writing about boring export commodities.

I passed it around to each cube and office early the next morning – including the president’s.  I knew who he was, but I’d never actually met him or had to interact with him.

As people came in to work, several dropped by my cube and said, “did you write this?  This is great.” I really don’t need much validation, but it was nice to hear.

About mid-morning the president came to my cube.  He stood at the door with the memo and stared at me.  My heart dropped a bit.

“Did you write this?”

*Gulp* “Yes.”

“This is wonderful.  I got a good laugh.  We need more humor around here.  Keep it up.”  Then he left.

I was on a self-esteem high the rest of the week.

EPILOGUE: But it kind of backfired.  One of the associate publishers was a dick and was pretty much despised by everyone. He was on the team.  My nickname for him was “Too Sexy For Myself.”  Actually, it was the part of the memo people found the most hilarious. The joke was that he was short, squat, and very average-looking, but thought he was an ultra-suave Brad Pitt.

He fired me not long after.  As he was escorting me out, in the elevator, he said, “I just don’t think you like your job.”

He was probably right.  But I’m pretty sure he was mostly butthurt over my making him look foolish, and jealous over the big guy liking it.  Some dicks just can’t take a joke.

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