About this ‘termination’ business…


First off, how are you? I hope the kids are okay.

I’m sorry to hear that you’ve defaulted on your mortgage, and that you’ve fallen off the wagon. Actually, that’s why I’m writing to you today. It’s about this whole ‘litigation’ matter.

It has dawned on us here in the United States office that perhaps your termination from Bastard&Bastard was unreasonable. Even rash, you might say. I’ll try and explain our position in this matter. Sometimes, we keep certain… secrets from various, boring officials. Nothing serious you understand. Just that we’re aware that our competitors might use nasty words like ‘industrial sabotage’ or ‘slavery-like conditions’ to bad mouth our competitive practises.

If we for a moment thought you’d show the initiative to hack our internal network and discover the alleged waste dumping practices we’ve been involved in over in South East Asia, we would never have let you go. Not because we were afraid of some silly ‘world trade’ organization probe, or even an EPA audit. No. We love the fact that you showed enough dedication to your role as accounts administrator to ‘keep’ these records ‘safe’ minutes after you were fired, and hours before our IT team ‘accidentally’ wiped that data from our system and locked you out of our network. Saving those records from permanent destruction is the kind of dedication that we here at Bastard&Bastard appreciate. Now, some organizations might be angry with you for doing this. They might call you mean words like a ‘traitor’, ‘whistle blower’, or ‘government informant’, but I just want you to know Jack, that we here at Bastard&Bastard are kind, caring and reasonable employers who understand that you simply wanted to make sure that those records were kept safe, and who better to protect important stuff than the police? You made the right choice – and that just about brings me to the crux of the matter.

Firing you was wrong. That was mean of us. You didn’t deserve that. If anything, you deserve a raise for your dedication in hacking our secure network to save those very important files from permanent deletion. And that’s exactly what we here at Bastard&Bastard want to give you. A raise. That’s why we’d like to move on from that little termination fiasco and make you managing director of our Singapore operation!

Now, don’t worry Jack, no one’s asking you to move to Singapore and be away from your ailing mother whose medical costs I understand you can no longer afford since you lost your job (again, sorry); or even to separate you from your children, whose tuition fees I imagine are due soon. No. We believe that you have what it takes to manage the Singapore operation right from home. No need to ever go back to the office, or even liaise with our division there. All you have to do is remain at home and cash those cheques – and believe me Jack, those cheques are fairly sizeable. Now, I understand that an eight year employment contract for $300 000 a year excluding an $80 000 sign-on bonus might sound like ‘bribery’ to some people, but believe me Jack, you’ve earned it, and we here at Bastard&Bastard recognise a valuable employee when we see one.

Also, given as to how our stock has recently plummeted due to those fallacious reports in the media about a dumping operation in South East Asia, we’re comfortable with giving you a 5% share of Bastard&Bastard in stock options as a way of saying ‘sorry’ for our conduct in this matter. But that’s not all Jack. We would also like to offer you a company car. Obviously, given your promotion to the extremely important role of Operations Manager, we can’t just have you in any silly old car. How does a Mercedes S Class sound?

Now, I know you’re probably excited about this offer Jack, but it’s important you don’t tell anyone about your new promotion. You should probably not even tell your family, and most certainly not the police (they would just get jealous because they don’t get Mercedes S Class company cars).  If anyone asks you why you suddenly have so much money, don’t tell them about your promotion. It’s a financial crisis out there Jack, and you’ll only make them feel bad that they are not as hard working and successful as you. Instead, tell them that you won that money on a horse race, or maybe it’s money that a friend owed you, or something to that effect. It’s important that you’re modest about your wealth, and not too flashy. As for the details regarding the company car and the stock options, we’ll discuss them later. All I want to know for now is that you’re excited about being on the ground floor of something big!

If you like the sound of your new promotion, then we’d like to hear from you. But don’t just call us Jack. Given the recent spate of cyber-attacks on the telecommunications network and government and police monitoring, just about anyone could be listening in on our conversation, and I don’t see why we should let a bunch of busy-bodies know about your newfound success here at Bastard&Bastard. Besides, telephones are boring. This is an exciting promotion, and there should be an exciting way to go about accepting it. We’ll pretend instead you’re a spy. That sounds exciting, doesn’t it Jack?

That’s why we want you to go to Milroy’s Café at Garema Place between the hours of 1pm-2pm this Thursday. There, you will see a man who will be wearing a black suit with a gold tie. Tell that man that you are ‘Mr Gibbon, the rat catcher’. The man will then respond by asking you if you catch purple rats. You then tell the man that you only catch purple rats on Wednesdays if it’s drizzling a bit outside and you’ve got a runny nose. The man will then ask if you have any problems with flatulence. You will then respond by saying ‘only if I’ve had a herbal tea made out of gibbons that morning with my breakfast.’ The man will then pass you a manila envelope. Inside that manila envelope will be a key to a PO Box at the General Post Office next to the Jolimont centre. Inside that PO Box, you will find a credit card and pin written on a post-it. The name of the business on the credit card might look odd, but believe me Jack, ‘Fitzgerald’s Cleaning Services’ is a routine Bastard&Bastard executive account we use to pay all our executives. There’s nothing weird about this. Go and use that credit card at any ATM or checkout. It will work. The credit card will be topped up on the first Tuesday of every month, without delay.

Finally, one more thing. The whole matter of you being a ‘crown witness’ has some of us here worried Jack. Very worried. This is an important job we’re offering you here, and we don’t feel comfortable with you indulging your ‘hobbies’. Now, I understand that you’ve made some very interesting friends in the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions office, however, sometimes, friendships have to end. Especially when there is important work to get on with; like managing our Singapore division from the comfort of your own home! That’s why we’d like you to understand that we want you 100% dedicated to this role. Sitting in a witness box is a boring thing to do Jack. It can take days, and we’d like to make sure that you’re not being tied down sitting around answering boorish old lawyers questions about our ‘business model’ or ‘offshore accounts’. Talking about work outside of work is only what boring people do Jack – and you’re anything but boring! So let them know that you won’t be the stale old mediocre witness they want you to be! Be a winner Jack! Make your own choices, be your own man, and make some exciting changes as part of the Bastard&Bastard family.

Also, before I forget Jack, one of our more… excitable employees simply loves children. He happened to take some photographs of your children on their way to and from school over the last few weeks. Some of the photos look rather good. Clear line of sight, steady hands, perfect exposure. I’ll be frank Jack, these are great head-shots made at over three hundred yards… I guess you could say he’s a real professional.

Please think over our decision carefully and let us know your response. We’re eager to give you a gift. One way or another.

All the best,

Brendan O’Connor,

Operations Manager, Auxiliary services


– Jack Lonsdale

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