Dirges vs. Rubberdick

Blue City Sunset

Returning to the office adventures of Preston Dirges, we previously left Preston deflecting the questions of new recruit Valerie. He then runs for a meeting with Dave ‘Rubberdick’ Rubnick, the Head of Human Resources…


Preston walks into Rubnick’s office without knocking.

RUBNICK: Don’t you believe in knocking, Preston?

PRESTON: Not when I’m expected. Or otherwise.

RUBNICK: I could have been doing something confidential.

PRESTON: Like what?

RUBNICK: I can’t tell you, that’d be confidential. Now let’s turn this conversation around 360 degrees, and pronto. We’re here to talk about you, not me. How long have you been here, Preston? Five years?

PRESTON: Six. Going on for seven.

RUBNICK: And in that time, have you ever had a promotion?


RUBNICK: Have you ever had a pay rise?

PRESTON: No, I don’t think I have.

RUBNICK: Have we ever paid you a bonus?

PRESTON: Not that I remember.

RUBNICK: Some might take that as a hint, but you’re persistent, Preston. I grant you that. You can’t be happy here, but you persist.

PRESTON: I’ve got used to being here.

RUBNICK: We’re used to you, and you know what they say about familiarity. Let’s lay our cards on the table. I know you like to call a spade a shovel and to call a trowel a little shovel. The management team think you have a bad attitude, with a capital ‘B’, ‘A’, ‘D’ and ‘attitude’. You’re not a team player. There’s no ‘I’ in team.

PRESTON: That depends on which language you’re speaking. The French word – équipe – has an ‘I’: E, Q, U, I…

RUBNICK: But there is an ‘I’ in facetious.

PRESTON: You’re not facetious.

RUBNICK: Who says I’m being facetious?

PRESTON: Well you said ‘I’, implying you were talking about yourself.

RUBNICK: I also said there’s no ‘I’ in team.

PRESTON: Exactly.

RUBNICK: But I am a team player.

PRESTON: If you say so.

RUBNICK: Look Preston, enough of your verbal jousting. You over-indulge on the fun and games. To be fair, you’ve also delivered results, but you don’t play nice and get along.

PRESTON: That’s not my fault. Blame my boss.

RUBNICK: You don’t have a boss!

PRESTON: Exactly. If I had a boss, I’d have someone to guide me.

RUBNICK: You don’t have a boss because you won’t listen to what anyone says. Nobody wants to manage you, Preston, because you’re unmanageable. So let me run an idea up the flagpole and see how it flows down the plughole. You’re going nowhere fast in this company. But if you were to complete this current audit without fuss, and then chose to leave, I’d make sure you get your bonus, and severance pay, and be paid for your notice, without being made to work it.

PRESTON: Why would you do that?

RUBNICK: Because most of us want something you won’t let us have – an easy life. Doug agrees, we don’t need a Certification Compliance…

PRESTON: Compliant Certification

RUBNICK: …function. Complete your audit, walk away, and pocket the money. It’s a stone cold win-win.

PRESTON: I’ll need to think about it.

RUBNICK: Of course. Just let me know by the end of the week.

PRESTON: And what about Valerie?

RUBNICK: Val? Don’t worry, she’s marked out for better things. We won’t drag her down by making her pick up your slack. Now be a sport, run along and give some thought to our conversation. Take the rest of the day off, if you like.

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