By BEN R. WILLIAMS
Dear Mr. Cumberdale,
Boy, is my face red.
I’m writing to you with my hat in hand, hoping to appeal to your better angels. Your kindness would really mean a lot to me right now.
When I started working at Cumberdale’s Shoe Emporium four years ago, I thought you were just about the best boss I’d ever had. You were willing to take a chance on me, and I really appreciated that. I also appreciated your competitive wages, lenient policy on breaks, and near-total lack of security cameras. It meant a lot.
But then, when you suddenly accused me of embezzling $27,000 from your store over a four-year period, I was absolutely shocked. And when you said you were not only going to have me fired but also press charges … well, I’ll admit, it just didn’t sit right with me.
First off, I did NOT embezzle $27,000 from you. The actual amount was closer to $40,000, but in my defense, I really needed the money to pay for some unrelated legal expenses I would rather not discuss at this time.
Did I deserve some sort of punishment? Sure, I won’t deny that. But losing my job? Legal action? That all seems pretty over-the-top. Whatever happened to a stern talking-to? Maybe some sort of demerit? That seems much more reasonable to me.
I was upset, I’ll confess it. Hey, you had really wronged me!
So, I did what anyone would do: I launched an extensive online effort to convince multiple paramilitary groups that you were responsible for everything bad that ever happened to them, and then I told them to meet me in the parking lot of Cumberdale’s Shoe Emporium at a specific time, and then once they had assembled, I told them to break down the doors, hunt you down, and murder you.
Look, don’t pretend like you’ve never done the same thing to one of your bosses.
Of course, never in my wildest dreams did I think it would go so far. I never told them to break into your office and steal the pictures of your loved ones off your desk to use as target practice. I never told that one dude who was dressed like a viking to make bathroom on the little putting green your wife gave you for Christmas. I certainly NEVER told the face-paint man to do what he did with that can of Odor-Eaters, although I’ll admit, it was pretty impressive to watch.
No, all I told them to do was find you and murder you. I swear, that was my only intent.
Of course, you were able to hide inside that box of those discounted shoes that have the little individual toes on them; a clever ruse, since no one in their right mind would ever look in there. In doing so, you escaped with your life.
So, I mean, no harm done, right?
Let’s look at the facts: you want two things in life. One, you want me to no longer be employed at your store, and two, you want to continue being alive. From where I’m standing, it looks like you got both of your wishes.
As a result, I’m frankly at a loss as to why you’re still pursuing this thing. Your continuing efforts to have me face legal consequences seem pretty vindictive, if you ask me. I mean, what even is “attempted murder?” I’m not big on participation trophies.
However, in the spirit of compromise, you will soon be receiving an Edible Arrangements “Be Mine Bouquet” from me to you. I hope the delicious chocolate-dipped strawberries fill you with an overwhelming desire for reconciliation.
Besides, it’s been a week. Frankly, it’s time to move on.
Inmate #6141946, Red Onion State Prison