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Dogbert stands at a desk typing. He tells Dilbert, "I'm writing a book that debunks the effectiveness of business consultants." Dilbert says, "But common sense would say that you're being a consultant yourself, so your opinion is logically flawed." Dilbert says, "Only people with no common sense will buy your book." Dogbert replies, "I prefer to call them the mass market."
The caption says, "Thermostat wars." Wally stands behind Alice's desk wearing only a tie and his underwear. He says, "Be reasonable, Alice. When it's warm enough for you, it's too hot for normal humans." Wally continues, "Logically, you could wear a sweater. But there's nothing I can do to be less warm. Therefore, you must compromise." Dilbert asks, "Did she buy the argument?" Dilbert is also wearing a tie and boxer shorts. Wally holds a mirror and an electric razor. He replies, "No. But I'm going to shave my back and take another run at it."
Wally sits at his desk thinking, "Whoa . . . I found a huge bug in our new software product." Wally thinks, "I could alert the development team and work many hours of overtime to fix it . . ." Wally thinks, "Or I could surf over to my online brokerage service and buy stock in our competition." Dilbert asks, "Are you going to lunch?" Wally replies, "No, I have to do an analysis." Dilbert walks away thinking, "When Wally works through lunch . . . It's time to buy stock in our competition." Dilbert tells Alice, "Wally's working through lunch!" Alice says, "Quick! To the online brokerage service!" The Boss reads the newspaper and thinks, "Our competition is up ten points on no news. We're up two, maybe from the industry halo effect." The Boss tells Alice and Wally, ". . . Or maybe our new compensation plan is motivating smarter behavior." Wally says, "I think you nailed it."
Ratbert stands in front of a dry erase board and says, "Your strategy options can be shown in this matrix." Dilbert and the Boss sit at a conference table listening to the presentation. Ratbert continues, "The four boxes are 'Something . . . Something . . . Some other thing and whatever.'" Ratbert continues, "In phase two I hope to turn this matrix into concentric circles with labels and arrows." The Boss thinks, "I'm under the consultant's spell."
The Boss tells Dilbert and Wally, "In today's news, our company has decided to buy another dying company in a business we don't fully understand." The Boss continues, "Our stock rose five points on the announcement." Wally asks Dilbert, "Why does our stock go up every time we do something boneheaded?" Dilbert replies, "I like to think of it as our competitive advantage."
Dogbert and Ratbert walk through the house. Dogbert says, "I hear you're becoming an annoying person who misinterprets everything." Ratbert replies, "Yes, I'm more assertive." Dogbert says, "I said annoying, not assertive." Ratbert says, "Apology accepted." They stand at the top of the cellar stairs. Dogbert opens the dryer door and says, "Whatever you do, don't climb in this clothes dryer." Ratbert says, "Yeah, it does look cozy in there."
The Boss says to his secretary, "Carol, from now on I'd like you to type up all of my incoming voice mail so I can just read it." The Boss continues, "And print out all of my e-mail every day so I don't have to log onto the network." The Boss continues, "And get me a sandwich from the cafeteria. Ooh, no cash. I'll pay you back." Carol asks, "Do you want me to prechew the sandwich or can you handle that on your own?" Carol says to Wally and Dilbert, "Listen up, you overpaid engineers . . ." Carol continues, "By order of our reclusive boss, the new dress code for engineers is bumblebee costumes." Carol continues, "If you don't believe me, send him voice mail and ask for yourself. Oh, and he wants you to buy him a sandwich." The Boss asks Carol, "Still no messages this week? Is everybody out sick?" Carol replies, "I heard they have hives." Dilbert stands next to the Boss wearing a bee costume.
The Boss sits at his desk and says, "Dilbert, I've decided to downsize you." The Boss continues, "It's nothing personal, just an economic necessity." Dilbert tugs nervously at his necktie. The Boss says, "I calculated how much your salary was dragging down the value of my stock options." The Boss continues, "Without you, I can afford to go to the movies one additional time per year." The Boss continues, "And let's face it: recreation is important when one has a stressful job." Dilbert waves his arms and says sarcastically, "Hey, why don't you downsize Wally instead. You'll save enough in office supplies to buy popcorn too. Sheesh!" The Boss thinks, "Mmm . . ." Wally asks Dilbert, "How'd it go?" Dilbert says, "You know that team-building exercise we did last week? It didn't take."
A man says to Dilbert, "Yo, Dil-man!" Dilbert sits at his desk and thinks, "Uh-oh, it's Ken from sales." Ken says, "I told our biggest customers how great our next product will be. Now nobody will buy our current product." Ken asks, "When will the new version be available?" Dilbert replies, "In a year or two." Ken looks shocked. Ken says, "Hmm . . . I seem to have single-handedly destroyed an entire product line." Ken continues, "Luckily our biggest competitor is hiring sales people. And I'm betting THEY'LL have brisk sales this year! Commissions galore!" Dilbert thinks, "If there's justice in this world, the idiots will be punished . . ." Dilbert thinks, ". . . Before they get promoted." The Boss tells Dilbert, "Um . . . We need the new version by Tuesday."
Dilbert and Dogbert sit at a table reading documents. Dilbert says, "I have to turn this fifty-page proposal into a one-paragraph executive summary for our CEO. It's impossible." Dogbert responds, "Simple." Dogbert says, "How about 'give us three million dollars so we can buy cool technology, pump up our resumes and escape this festering boil you call a company?'" Dilbert says, "I feel obligated to say something about our customers." Dogbert says, "How about 'I'm glad I'm not one of them.'"