Manolo says, it is Monday, and you are NOT back at your desk, NOT slaving away for the man.
You were supposed to be back in the office this morning, as surely as the sun rises in the Easterly direction, doing your bit to increase the bottom line of MarScro International, the privately held company with interests in the manufacturing, importation and marketing of such diverse products as the lead-based Chinese toys, powdered Sudanese baby formula, and Liberian-made cellphones.
You were supposed to be back at the work, but on Christmas Day, shortly after nine in the morning, you received the strangest phone call from the CEO, Mr. S., himself, the eccentric billionaire famous in the financial press for driving the 1962 Nash Rambler (which he purchased new), and for chasing business reporters away from his decrepit three-bedroom home with the walking stick.
It was the strangest call, because the perpetually sour, old Mr. S. sounded giddy, perhaps even drunk, shouting “Merry Christmas”, and weepily thanking you for being such the faithful employee. And then he gave you the week off, followed by the big raise.
At that point, you became certain that the phone call was some lame practical joke, that this was not really the CEO, but rather some co-worker playing the cruel trick upon you.
“No, no, my dear lady. I assure you it is I.”
“But, sir, it may sound like you, but…but….”
“But, it is not my usual behavior? Not my custom to give raises to valued employees?”
“Yes, sir. Not your usual behavior.”
“Well, let us just say that I am a changed man, that from this day forth, I shall know how to keep Christmas well.”
And then he asked about your son.
“And how is little Tom?”
“He’s fine, sir.”
“Is he? The last I saw of the boy he was in a leg brace, so pathetic.”
“No, sir, he’s fine now. He’s a sophomore at Johns Hopkins, on a lacrosse scholarship.”
And then you remember that Tommy had come into the office the few years ago, on crutches, right after he had hyperextended his knee in the scrimmage against the varsity team.
When you finally hung up, “Merry Christmas!” and headed back into the family room to finish the opening of the presents, you were still not sure it had really been him.
But this morning, while you were sitting in the kitchen, drinking the coffee and debating whether or not you should get dressed and go into the office, the doorbell rang.
You pulled your housecoat tight around you, and went to the door, where you discovered the courier standing on the front step. He said your name. You signed the receipt. And then he handed you the thirty-five pound turkey, together with the envelope containing the fancy Christmas card and the substantial, year-end bonus check, with the words “Merry Christmas!” scrawled in the spidery script on the subject line.
And now, you are sitting at your computer thinking about getting some new shoes…
Something like these Maestro Manolo Blahnik Clausado D’Orsay Pumps in this rich blue color…. You have certainly earned them.