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Dilbert is sitting on his couch in his bathrobe. His pet rat approaches on the arm rest and says, "I can't sleep. Would you tell me a story." The rat is cuddled under a blanket on the couch. Dilbert begins his story: "Once upon a time there was a pointy-haired monster." He continues, "He promised riches to the villagers if they could achieve his random objectives." The rat begins to get drowsy. Dilbert continues his story: "The villagers worked long hours but they were happy and optimistic." Dilbert continues, "Suddenly the evil monster cut their funding and hired the village idiot to be project manager." Dilbert continues, "And that is how the villagers got trapped in meetings for all eternity. The end." The rat opens its eyes wide in horror. The rat cries, "Waaa!! Waaa!! Waaa!!" Dilbert says to Dogbert, "Rats cry when they hear about my life." Dogbert responds, "It never pays to listen."
Asok, The Boss, and Dilbert are sitting next to each other at a meeting. Asok raises his hand excitedly and says, "Ooh! Ooh! I know how to solve that problem!" The Boss replies, "Not so fast, Asok." Asok looks sullen as the Boss continues, "This isn't the solution meeting. This is the process meeting." The Boss continues, "Our goal is to develop a process for generating ideas to solve the problem." Wally turns to Asok and The Boss and says, "We don't know how to develop processes. Someone should have a meeting about that." Wally continues, "Someone like... a cross-disciplinary SWAT team in an offsite lockup meeting." The Boss says, "Hmm.. good idea." He then looks at Dilbert from the corner of his eye and finishes, "I guess this meeting is over." Wally continues to talk to Asok as they're walking out of the meeting. He says, "You see, Asok. You can only thwart a meeting by inventing other meetings to act as a firewall." The Boss approaches Asok at his desk and says, "Asok, I'm putting you on a cross-disciplinary SWAT team."
Alice is sitting at her computer. The Boss approaches from behind with a package in his hand and says, "Happy service anniversary, Alice." The Boss continues, "We're out of twenty-year pins so I got twenty of the one- year pins." The Boss hands Alice the package and says, "You can pin these babies all over your blouse... or fishing hat if you prefer." The Boss continues, "The card says, 'To Kathy' but it was never opened. For some reason she quit the day she got her twenty pins." The Boss continues, "Incidentally, I have to charge you $262 for the pins. The company doesn't pay for them." Alice holds the box angrily. Alice responds, "First of all, I've only worked here for about six years.." The Boss interrupts, "Wow, you look older. Anyway, just give me the $262 and throw away eight pins and we'll call it good." Alice rolls up her sleeve and shakes with anger. She holds one arm back with the other. The Boss asks, "Why are you rolling up your sleeve? Are you going to pin them to your arm?
The Boss says to Ted, "Ted, I have to downsize you." Ted turns around and asks, "Was I doing a bad job?" The Boss replies, "No, it's more complicated than that." Ted asks, "Is my essential function being eliminated?" The Boss answers, "No, the problem is that someone in marketing spent too much for a trade show booth." The Boss continues, "So every manager had to submit a list of potential cost reductions." The Boss continues, "I might have accidentally sent the department phone list as an e-mail attachment." Ted mumbles, "*%! $@." The Boss thinks, "There are lots of whiners in "A" through "M."
The Boss pops into Dilbert's cubicle and hands him a piece of paper. The Boss says, "Dilbert, take care of this. It's urgent." Dilbert responds, "I can't read your handwriting. What does it say?" The Boss responds, "I don't have time to answer your questions." The Boss continues, "Don't try to call me. I don't return calls." The Boss continues, "If you come to my office I'll be away." Headline: And then, like a bad odor on a windy day, the phantom manager vanished." Dilbert gives the note to Carol. She says, "I think it says, 'Floog smort olak munta hawthnort." Dilbert asks, "What does it mean?" Carol responds, "I think it involves monkeys and duct tape."
The CEO is at a lecturn. The CEO says, "Our company is too good to have results this poor." Dilbert raises his hand and says, "Question." The CEO thinks, "%#!* Engineers." The CEO says, "What?" Dilbert says, "Are you saying the laws of cause and effect do not apply?" Dilbert continues, "Logically, if we were good, we would generate good results." Sitting between the Wally and Alice, Dilbert continues, "Is it not more likely that we are pathetic losers who get exactly what we deserve?" The CEO says, "Yes, individually you're all losers. But together we're a great company. Thanks to my leadership." Wally says, "I feel like squirming but I don't have the energy."
The boss is walking and thinking, "Sometimes a manager must deliver bad news." The boss, behind Dilbert, thinks, "Luckily I enjoy it." The boss says, "Our sales force failed to meet their goals." The boss continues, "So I have to fire an engineer to reduce expenses." Dilbert says, "What?" Dilbert says, "You should fire the incompetent sales people!" Dilber continues, "It's immoral to punish innocent engineers for the sins of sales people! I will fight this all the way!" The boss says, "I'm firing Ted. Not you." Dilbert says, "Fair enough. Can you wait until I borrow his hole puncher?"
Dogbert, busily typing, says to Dilbert, "I'm writing a business book called 'Change Happens. Get Over It'." Dilbert says, "The title says it all." Dogbert says, "Yeah. It needs filler." Dilbert says, "How about a parable?" Dogbert says, "Good idea." Dogbert types, "Two bulls were talking." Dogbert continues typing, "One bull says, 'I'm afraid of change'." Dogbert continues typing, "The other bull says, 'Get over it'." Dogbert continues typing, "Later that day they were both ground into hamburgers and served at a picnic." Dogbert says to Dilbert, "The hard part will be finding someone to write the foreword."
In the kitchen, Dilbert says to his mother, "I've been thinking about your birthday, Mom." His mother says, "How sweet." Dilbert says to his mother, "It seems so inefficient to wrap up your present." As they carry milk and cookies out of the kitchen, Dilbert says to his mother, "You'll just rip up the wrapping paper an hour later." As his mother sets the cookies down, Dilbert says to her, "So I was thinking of throwing a towel over it instead." Dilbert says to his mother, "You'd get all of the element of surprise without wasting paper." Dilbert says to his mother, "Maybe I can use one of your towels so I don't have to lug one from my house." Dilbert's mom says, "Of course, dear. I wouldn't want you to lug a big heavy towel just for me." Dilbert reaches for a cookie and says, "Good. It's settled." His mother says to him, "Those aren't for you."
Boss: Your bonuses this year will be based on the usual formula. 50% is based on pure luck. And 50% is based on the performance of people you have never met. This year, the luck factor was good. Our industry experienced huge consumer demand. Unfortunately, people who you have never met did a bad job of marketing and sales are terrible. And for that, you engineers must be punished. No bonuses for you. Luckily for me, my bonus is based on how well I can convince you idiots to work hard while getting no bonuses. I don't like to brag, but I'm fairly sure I'm nailing it.