Agent 54 is a regular guy. He has a sense of humor and an active imagination. Agent 54 works for the Nominal Secrets Apparatus (NSA) under the DORD (Department of Redundancy Department) as a Listener/Reader. His job is to read, view or listen to data collected by the NSA and determine if there is a risk to national security. Agent 54 reports to his bosses, H. Cuffs and Max (Agent 86). He doesn’t take his job too seriously because he knows he’s spying on regular people most of the time.
Keystone Lighting was an old, dark, dirty,
dank and dangerous place to work. Though
it appeared to be all one building, it was really a series of buildings that just
had makeshift roofs built between individual buildings many years ago. The roofs had large holes and leaked
constantly. The brick walls were
crumbling and the floors were bumpy and uneven.
There were many dark corners where something or someone could hide and
then spring out to ambush an unsuspecting worker. Located in Bristol, Bucks County, PA it was also rumored to be haunted.
I worked in the Press department where there
lurked a creepy old man with a club foot named Frank Snyder. He waddled like Batman’s nemeses The Penguin
when he walked about the shop and he could always be heard saying in a W.C.
Fields type voice “I been here 20 years, I seen em come and I seen em go”. I don’t know what his real job was. Frank
was always annoying the other press operators by sticking his nose in
everyone’s business and turning up the speed on the presses until the machines broke
I was taught this little song sung to the
tune of “Spiderman” in my first week in the Press department:
Turns the press up as
fast as he can
Jam it up, every time
He ain’t worth a
Look out! Here comes
the Snyderman Is he dumb I suppose If brains were Dynamite he couldn't blow his nose Look out! Here comes the Snyderman
At first I didn’t have a problem working with
creepy old Snyderman. I’ve worked with
all kinds of creeps before. Then came
the rainy shift that the foreman called out sick on and some fool put Snyder in
charge. Whoever made that decision could
not have done worse. The trouble
started when I hurt my back reaching for something with the rake which is a
regular part of my job. As standard
manufacturing practice goes, we were required to report any injury or accident
immediately to the foreman. I went to
the office and told Snyder exactly what happened. We were working the 3:30 to Midnight shift
so, I told Snyder that I could finish out the shift but, I had to see a the
company doctor the next day which again is standard procedure. The next day, after visiting the company
doctor, I was told by the foreman that I would have to pay for the visit
because I failed to report the workplace injury. Snyder was in the room when this happened and
he denied that I had ever reported the incident. I was furious! Not only did I have to pay for the doctor’s
visit but, this was a negative mark on my work record. When I angrily questioned Snyder why he did
this to me, he said “I don’t answer to you”
which only enraged me more.
For days I stewed with back pain about the
incident but, no matter how much I schemed, It always came out the same in the
end. Reality was that if I attempted any
type of retaliation against the ugly old cripple, it would backfire on me 10
fold. I would get fired and I would be
criminally charged for sure. The judge
would look at Snyder the old cripple and me the young former Marine and Hockey
player and he or she would throw the book at me. I had no choice in reality. I could do nothing.
In fantasy however, well that’s a different
story. I thought of many ways to get
even with Snyderman but, finally it came down to the simplest. While operating the 12 ton press late on a
dark night I would plug the safety light catch with a piece of scrap and then
call old Frank over to take a look at a fake problem. Once he bent over and put his head down to
take a look, boom! I would kick him in the ass as hard as I could so his head
would get wedged in the 12 ton press and then I would push the start
button. In less than a second his head
would be squashed like a grape by a sledgehammer. Brains and blood would spurt out all over the
Press department and I would laugh.
hoo, haa haa, hoo hoo I would laugh until I cried and bent over with stomach
cramps. But, as I rise, through watery
eyes I see something waddling towards me.
No, no it can’t be. I wipe my
eyes and find myself backed up against two giant coils of steel and the
chain-link fence of the tool crib. It’s
still coming. This hideous mess of what
used to be Snyderman was waddling, headless, ever closer. Wait a minute! This is my
fantasy. All I have to do is close my
eyes for a couple of seconds and it would be gone. 1 second, 2 seconds, then open and Ahh!
It’s right on me! Somebody Hel………
Many years ago, Agent 54 played Ice Hockey in
Pennsylvania. My neighborhood Ice Rink was called The Ice Palace and it
was a run-down old barn that was built before the war (I don’t know which
war). The boards were rickety, the locker-rooms were small and smelled of
stale beer and mold but, it had the old ammonia cooling system for the ice so
it was the best place to skate in the area. The Ice Palace had an
old-time feel to it and the Hockey players loved it.
One other peculiar thing was the huge mound (15 ft tall) of
reddish brown dirt that covered the entire west end of the rink and blocked
foot traffic around the rink. I’m talking about inside the building, just
past the West end boards. To make it even weirder, the dirt had 3ft tall
fake Christmas trees planted every 5 or six feet. It just didn’t look
right, even with the Christmas lights turned on.
One of the years that I ran for Allentown City Council, something
happened at the rink, I don’t remember what, that inspired me to write the
following. I gave a copy of it to Ric, the owner and he had it pinned up
on his corkboard for years before he sold the old barn and they turned it into
a banquet facility. Ric and I thought this was funny:
To Whom It May Concern:
Four score and seven years ago, I first skated at the Ice
Palace. When I saw the mountain of real dirt impregnated with plastic
trees I was amazed by the beauty of it all.
in the seasons since then a terrible problem has drawn my attention. Lost mittens and Gloves. Many a child has absent-mindedly
stuffed their mittens between the glass and the boards. Many gloves are abandoned in the
These mittens then find their way to the lost and found box
in the locker room where sweaty and drunken Hockey players use them to
warm their beer drinking hand. Beer is spilled on them and then they are
usually stuffed into the drunkest players equipment bag or winged off to the
farthest corner of the locker room, where they develop a disgusting stench,
which renders them useless to children. Hockey players use the mittens
for other disgusting purposes that decency will not permit me to elaborate on.
The solution it seems is to sell the parents one skate lace
to attach to the mittens. The skate lace is then strung through the arms
of the child’s jacket, causing the mittens to dangle when not in use.
As of now, no government funding is available for the
research needed to fight this problem. If we all work together we can
make Washington hear our voice. Let’s end the abuse ofLost mittens and Glovesin our life time. Thank you.
Did I ever tell you about the great job I had
at with a defense contractor? Oh, it was
cool. I was a Production Expeditor which
means I was one of the X-Men. It was
great, I had a uniform with a mask and
my cape looked a lot like my blue Hawaiian shirt. I had to dry clean it twice a month but, I
really looked sharp. I got “downsized”
from that job and since then I’ve been “nervous eating” and I’ve gained some
weight. Now, I’m a Double X man as in
Raise your hand if have had a rotten
boss. Sure, almost everyone has had at
least one if you have been working for more than 2 weeks. Currently my boss is great. He’s very relaxed, has a sense of humor and
he treats me with respect even though he is much younger than I am. My boss is easy to work for and I’m not just
kissing his butt because he might accidently read this.
I don’t want to go into details about some of
my rotten former bosses. I’m sure they
are generally the same as everyone else’s rotten bosses. Basically they humiliate you, make you feel
worthless, tell other people you suck, accuse you, cheat you and take the
credit for the good things you do. Did I
forget anything? It always amazed me
that a boss that treated me all of those ways would somehow expect me to give a
shit and perform well at the job. It
just don’t happen.
I just want to know how many of you have had
the exact same fantasy that I have had about getting even with a rotten
boss. It starts when you are working
early or late or a Saturday and nobody else is around. Maybe the boss is on vacation or a business
trip but the coast is clear and the devil on your left shoulder has got your
ear while the angel on the right is too tired to care. You spot your opening. His/her center drawer in his/her desk is
open. You carefully slide the center
drawer all the way open and take the little keys from the pencil tray. Next you climb up on top of the desk, drop
your draws, squat and let loose the poop of the year right in the middle of
that center drawer right on top of whatever was there. After fully evacuating your bowels, you dress
and then very carefully close the drawer and lock it. The most important thing here is the message
you are trying to send. Leaving the desk
drawer slightly open or unlocked could leave some of the dumber bosses to
think, upon discovering the dirty deed that “maybe this was an accident”. “Maybe somebody’s IBS (Irritable Bowel
Syndrome) kicked in just as they were passing by my desk and the drawer was they’re
only option”. Locking the drawer and hanging
the keys carefully on the boss’s name plate on top of the desk will leave no
doubt that this was NOT an accident.
I have fantasized about the confused look on
the boss’s face when they find the drawer locked and then see the keys hanging
from the name plate. I have imagined
watching from the corner of my eye as Mr./Ms. Knucklehead opens the drawer and
discovers his/her karma in all its stinky glory, waiting there for them. Ah, it would almost be worth it to get fired
Of course I’ve never actually done that to
the 6 or 7 bosses that I’ve had that really deserved it but, oh, I’ve thought
of it a thousand times. I guess that
fantasy helped get me through work those days when the boss thought it was his/her
job to be SuperJerk! I theorize that most of us working dogs have
had this or a similar fantasy to help us cope with our days and keep on keepin
on because that’s what a working man or woman does. We keep on keepin on.
It started off okay. I finished the photo challenge with a pic of
me on a pony. Then the Sinus virus
hit. I tried to fight it but, I lost and
missed too much work. Then my wife was
in a car crash. She was a passenger and
their car was hit by the Ralph’s lunch truck. Yes, she got run over by the same barf wagon
that visits my workplace daily. I teased
her that she just wanted everyone I work with to eat healthier. She is bruised but, not really injured and I
told her that she made a brave sacrifice for my work buddies.
It is amazing to me that I can still be funny
when I feel like crap. Carol says about
her bruises “it only hurts when I laugh”.
Oopppss!!! She married the wrong
Missing work at my new job gave me some
anxiety so I visited my friend Dr.Goldbloops.
Dr. Goldbloops told me an old joke of his that made me feel better. Here it is:
Young polar bear comes home from
school, this is a true story.
He asks his
mom “Mom, Grandma and Grandpa were polar bears weren’t they?
answers “Of course they were son. Go get
washed up for dinner.
dinner table the young polar bear asks his father “Dad, Nanny and Pappy were
both polar bears weren’t they?
answers “Of course they were. Why do you
ask such a silly question?
Young polar bear
answers “Cuz I’m freezing!”.
best I can do this week. Next week I
promise I’ll do better.