Contributors Archives

Christine Sneed

Interoffice Memorandum 4/20

SquirrelDate: April 20th

To: All Quest Industries Employees
From: President Bryan Stokerly, Esq.
Subj: Important Discoveries

I am very pleased to share with you a few recent discoveries I’ve made that I think you
too will benefit from:

1. Some of us think we are allergic to nuts, but we are not.
2. Parking in a tow zone for 1-3 minutes is usually okay.
3. It is very difficult to know, objectively speaking, if you are good-looking.
4. Late-night eating is never a good idea, unless you have had nothing to eat in at least
12+ hours.
5. It’s okay to swim on a full stomach, as long as it’s not too full.
6. Women named Stephanie are, as a rule, extremely unfriendly, in my experience.
7. Public restrooms, if at all possible, should be avoided.
8. I am fairly certain that in a past life I was a squirrel and resided in Norway.
9. Dogs are excellent judges of character. In fact, they’re never wrong.
10. It’s true that you can get sunburn when it’s cloudy outside.
11. Dill pickles have no calories! I know this seems unbelievable, but I’m not lying.
12. Cat brains are more like human brains than dog brains are, which explains why cats
are often such assholes.

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Interoffice Memorandum 3/27

Little Green MenDate: March 27th

To: All Quest Industries Employees
From: Ken Crickshaw Jr., Office Manager
Subj: Dispelling Rumor re: UFO Sighting

With my generalist title of “Office Manager,” I am aware that many here at Quest
Industries can’t help but consider me a jack of all trades, even if the current description
for this position does not include dispelling rumors related to supernatural phenomena
such as ghost or UFO sightings. Be that as it may, I am happy to provide this service
despite its absence from my detailed list of job duties.

Fred Sagen, CFO, who is near retirement and admits to failing eyesight, nevertheless
swears on his life that he saw a UFO hovering outside his office window six evenings ago
when he was here working late on the quarterly earnings statement. As an armchair UFO expert, I was intensely interested when Fred, quite shaken, approached me the next
morning with his story and asked if I might be willing to investigate. In short order, with
the help of Julie Jagger in R & D, I was able to attach a motion-detecting camera to the window through which Fred spotted the glowing pale orange sphere that caused him such alarm and concern.

Nothing of note was recorded by the camera for the first four nights after its installation,
but last night, I am happy to report, it captured several geese flying past the window at an oddly late hour as well as what appeared to be a weather balloon plummeting to its
demise on the cement sidewalk many feet below Fred’s and our offices.

There was no UFO, however, and this leads me to believe that Fred’s myopia and probable glaucoma caused him to see something that wasn’t there.

Please rest assured that the motion-detecting camera will remain in place for another
week, possibly two, in case a bona fide UFO does reappear outside Fred’s office window,
but this seems unlikely, and Fred also admitted earlier today that he might have been
hallucinating, as he has had chronic insomnia for years. At times his hallucinations have been so onerous that last spring his physician barred him from operating motor vehicles, but Fred informed me the ban was lifted three weeks ago and so far, so good.

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Interoffice Memorandum 2/15

Office MemoDate: 15 February

To: All Quest Industries Employees

From: Judy Kemper, Vice President of Marketing

Subj: Lost cardigan—please help!

I seem to have misplaced a very important sweater and I’m almost certain I left it here in the office this past Friday. If you have seen my lime green Laura Ashley cardigan, size M, with pearl buttons, a small-to-medium gravy stain on one sleeve (left), and one frayed cuff (right), please tell me where you spotted it, and if this information leads to its recovery, I promise to give you a reward of your choosing, up to $10 in value. I do wish it could be more, but unfortunately, my husband and I are on a tight budget this month, due to expenses incurred when a tree fell on our car last Wednesday evening during a thunderstorm and another tree, unbelievably, fell on our roof less than an hour later!

What are the odds? And what on heaven and earth is going on with our karma? Not that I believe specifically in karma or anything related to the Hindu faith, but it does seem as if something strange is going on here.

By the way, if you choose to forfeit your reward for locating my treasured cardigan in light of Glenn’s and my current financial situation, I will be happy to repay the favor by searching high and low (for up to 15 minutes) if you ever lose anything of sentimental or monetary value in this office and are desperate for help finding it.

If anyone here at Quest Industries actually does know how to calculate the odds of a tree falling on your car and another tree falling on your roof less than an hour later, I’d be very interested in hearing what they are.

Here is some more information for the math nerd(s) among us: We have six trees on our property (well, four now, technically) and they are all about 50-75 years old: two birch, one maple, two evergreens, one gingko. There was a squirrel’s nest in the maple, and an unidentified bird’s nest in the gingko. The maple was the first tree to fall (on the roof) and the blasted gingko fell on the car approximately 48 minutes later. The car was parked in the driveway, about 8 yards from where the tree fell on the roof. The gingko and the maple were on opposite sides of the front yard and did not have overlapping root systems, as far as I know. Also, according to my mother-in-law, the gingko tree was haunted.

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Interoffice Memorandum 1/15

Office PlantDate: ​January ​15​
To: All Quest Industries Employees
From: Mid-Level Management
Subj: Live Plant Policies in the Office

A short note on office policy regarding potted plants and floral bouquets:

a) If you enjoy the company of a potted plant on your desk, please water it as needed in order to keep it from becoming an unsightly and dispiriting brown heap of tendrils, leaves, stalks, stems, pistils, stamens, husks, pods, and/or roots.

b) If you have received a bouquet and are keeping it at your desk, please do not, under any circumstances, balance it on the edge of your cubicle wall where it will inevitably be bumped and dislodged by a passing coworker and crash down upon his/her person, thus potentially resulting in grievous injury, permanent disability, and in some cases, death or dismemberment.

c) Cacti are not permitted inside or within 500 feet of our offices; we regret this exclusion, but due to an incident that occurred last spring on these premises with a visiting Nepalese diplomat, we must outlaw all cacti at Quest Industries; in fairness to the cactus involved in the incident, it is possibly true that the Nepalese diplomat is an extremely clumsy individual—nonetheless, in order to avoid future cacti-diplomat-related incidents, no members of this plant species are permitted anywhere on our property.

d) Some plants are known to attract various airborne insects; for example, gnats and an unidentified species with flea-like characteristics have been sighted in recent weeks swarming the three potted plants on Bill Dubonski’s desk; Bill has kindly and ungrudgingly addressed this situation with great success by spraying his miniature ficus, potted ivy, and a mongrel species of flowering plant with water containing a mild detergent.  No gnats or flea-like creatures have been spotted for the past 4 days swarming his cubicle or any neighboring cubicles.  Thank you, Bill.  With 72 hours’ advance notice, Bill has informed us that he is willing to offer his special spray bottle to anyone in the office who might require it.

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