I had a dream once. I use the word "dream" very loosely, because it was more like a psychological disturbance, a kink in the REM waves or something. It was about a rat factory. Prior to my dream, I had never known there to be such a thing, nor would I think about rats at length. In fact, among my top five fears (which also includes job interviews) are mice in the house. The entire dream was drab, gray, and looked like an illustration Stephen Gammell would do (see http://jschancellor.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/scarystorysamsnewpet-1.jpg). My job as a rat factory worker was to separate the dead rats from the live rats. COULD THERE BE A WORSE JOB?
I submit that there can. Or at least, one that's neck-and-neck. And that is...
A feather packaging plant.
Now, you may be asking yourself, "Kami (actually, you would say "Self", since you're asking yourself...lol), how could working with soft, downy feathers compare to taking rats off a conveyor belt?" But just consider this. If you sneeze, feathers would go E-VE-RY-WHERE. Drafts, same sad story. An 8-hour a day shift of that would be enough to drive anyone to the madhouse (where hopefully they are down pillow-less)! I wonder what staff meetings are like for feather-packing employees. For some reason I picture the managing staff like the aunts on James and the Giant Peach... One, really tall, gangly, and spectacled and the other short, stout, and ornery. Both in suits, both ready with tazer in hand.
"Do not sneeze. If you sneeze, you will be terminated.
Do not open doors. If you open a door, you will be terminated.
Do not open windows. If you open a window, you will be terminated.
Do not whistle. If you whistle, you will be terminated.
Do not move unnecessarily. If you move unnecessarily, you will be terminated.
Do not breathe out. Or in. ..."
Which brings me to another point that has nothing to do with rats, Stephen Gammell, or staff meetings, and that is the English language, and, more specifically, a tense I have originally devised. Say the word "breathed". "Breathe-D". It's a horrid noise to add to an innocent atmosphere. So, for each word that has a "long e" sound (for all who are not English buffs, those are words like breathe, leap, sleep), in the past, it is now changed to a "long a" sound, with (and this is important), NO D at the end. For example:
Breathed becomes ---> Brathe (ahhh, isn't that a breath of fresh air? It sounds so much cleaner)
Leaped becomes -----> Lape
So, in the morning you can say, "I lape into bed last night", or "Hey, I snake up on you, and you didn't even see me", or "Dang, I just brathe in a bug"... Things like that.
Try it out! You won't go back!