Attn: Mr. Elvis Cat, Standing On The Shoulders Of Giant Midgets; Re: Performance review

>> Friday, September 30, 2011

Dear Mr. E. Cat,

As you are no doubt aware, the dire state of the economy has forced many institutions to re-evaluate their fiscal situations and consider whether or not their current policies and practices carry long-term sustainability over the expected forecasts of continued reduced economic growth or even possible recession. Accordingly, one of the initiatives we are implementing here at Standing On The Shoulders Of Giant Midgets is a mandatory performance review of all employees to determine whether or not they need to be retained or demobilized as negative assets as a reduction-of-costs policy.

The major question is whether every member of the team is a producing member. A good employee of Standing On The Shoulders Of Giant Midgets is one who every day asks, "How have I increased shareholder value in this blog?" Such a valued employee considers not only mandated policies for increasing revenue and reducing expenses, but thinks outside the box in seeking innovative new ways to do so. At the end of the day, a valued employee should be able to point to at least one specific task performed during the course of the day by which the value of this blog was increased.

In conducting your performance review, due consideration was given to your years with the company, your experience and education, your interactions with customers and with other members of the Giant Midgets team.

I regret to inform you, Mr. Cat, that your performance was found to be sub-satisfactory along several axis of evaluation. Co-workers indicated that you do not appear to understand the premise that there is no "I" in "team", though, to be perfectly fair, it isn't clear that you understand that there are in fact an "e" and an "a", or that you have any comprehension of alphanumeric characters whatsoever.

Along similar lines, while it is clear that you have received company memos (as you have been observed sitting on them and/or pawing at their edges, producing an irritating rasping sound), there has never been any indication that you've ever read any of them, including those memos specifically relevant to your position in the company.

An appraisal of your indifference to the written word has not led to a satisfactory conclusion as to whether you are an indifferent employee who does not believe the rules applicable to everyone else are also applicable to himself, or whether it is indicative of gross deficiencies in your formal education. As you ought to be aware, some college education is almost mandatory in highly-technical fields such as Internet communication and multimedia; yet there is no evidence in your file that you even have a high school diploma, much less any sort of collegiate degree appropriate to this venture's expectations! If you are in possession of documentation verifying your educational attainments, degrees held, papers published, seminars attended, classes taught, etc., it is incumbent upon you to produce such proofs at once. (In the meantime, you should be advised that an audit is taking place in HR to determine how your file is missing this crucial documentation in the first place.)

Concerns have also been raised as to what, exactly, it is you do around here. You have been observed eating, sitting around, sleeping, just lying around, running around in small circles, looking intently out of a window, hiding beneath furniture, zipping across a room at full tilt with no apparent provocation, and other activities with no obvious application to the mission of this blog. Your food consumption deserves particular notice, as we were surprised to discover that while other employees are expected to purchase their own food or bring their lunches to work, your meals have apparently been compensated by the company and appear as a regular line-item on the monthly budget!

As if all of this wasn't bad enough, you have furthermore been observed interfering with the work of more productive employees. It has been reported that upon several occasions an (anonymous) employee was trying to work productively at his terminal, increasing shareholder value, whereupon you came over (uninvited), stood on your hind legs with your front paws on the employee's thigh or waist (digging your claws in, nearly necessitating a worker's compensation review for the employee in question), and making a sound characterized as a "meeping" or "mewling" until the employee stopped increasing shareholder value and picked you up and cradled you on his shoulder as if you were a small child and not a fully-grown adult. It has also been reported that upon one occasion you engaged in similar behavior with a (anonymous) female employee, which our lawyers suggest could be construed as creating a hostile workplace environment or direct sexual harassment of this employee. There are also repeated reports of an (anonymous) employee attempting to take a phone call, whereupon you suddenly appeared from whatever other part of the premises you were occupying (hopefully working to increase shareholder value, although there is circumstantial evidence you may have been napping), and proceeded to interfere with the phone call by making noises, running between the employee's legs if he was walking around with the phone, and digging your claws into his thigh if he was standing or sitting while taking the call; ironically, it appears that in every single reported incident, as soon as the call was finished you ran into another room and refused to interact with the employee at all even when he asked you what you wanted and attempted to assist you with whatever effort you were purportedly making to increase shareholder value.

It is also believed that you have a recurring problem with throwing up while at work. We are reluctant to harp on this point too greatly, as we have no direct evidence of alcoholism or an eating disorder which may be covered by the employee health plan and/or may place you in a protected disability class. All we would do is mention that (a) vomiting on a co-worker's workspace is considered poor etiquette, especially when there is a fully-accessible restroom nearby and (b) you know better than we do if there are any issues which you might want to discuss with HR or one of the service providers covered by the employee healthcare plan.

Any of these issues, with the likely exception of the digestive concerns mentioned in the previous paragraph, supra, might be considered cause for termination. In an effort to be fair, however, we have made what we hope is a thorough attempt to quantify any positive assets you've brought to your position in the company when you weren't procrastinating, interfering with other employees' work, or damaging company property.

Notwithstanding criticisms of your work ethic, refusal to be a team player, lax standards, and bad habits, your co-workers mostly speak highly of you. Adjectives frequently used to describe you include "cute", "adorable", "sweet", "handsome", "good" and "precious". While many of these adjectives are clearly referring to your physical presentation and have little or no bearing on your work or on increased shareholder value, we will concede that your co-workers clearly think highly of you. Unexpectedly, many of your least-productive and most-destructive behaviors have been met with expressions of sympathy, although it is hard to imagine acts such as putting holes in a co-worker's shirt or vomiting near his feet would be tolerated from any of your peers in the company.

It is the effect your presence clearly has on company morale that has saved you from being listed as a negative asset and being demobilized from the company payroll. You should know that discussion was extremely heated and produced a split vote regarding your retention until a compromise resolution was reached.

Therefore, you are hereby notified that you have been placed on probationary employment, effective immediately. Your performance will be subjected to routine review over the course of the next ninety days, and a failure to discern efforts on your part to increase shareholder value will result in your immediate termination from the company with severance to be provided according to the contract you signed upon commencing your employment with Standing On The Shoulders Of Giant Midgets. No immediate action is being taken with regard to your company-compensated meals until a full audit has been performed and we are able to determine how it has come to pass that you are the sole employee receiving this benefit, and you are hereby notified that you may be required to reimburse the company for the meals you've enjoyed at company expense if a proper accounting of the costs to the company can be arrived at. You are hereby put on notice that continued interference with the efforts of your more responsible co-workers to increase shareholder value will not be tolerated. Should the terms and conditions of your probation be unacceptable, you are certainly welcome to seek employment elsewhere.

Cc: Human Resources
Cc: Legal Department
Cc: The Entire Internet


Nathan Friday, September 30, 2011 at 4:33:00 PM EDT  

LuLu, Widget and Teufel are all excellent employees. Teufel regularly types away upon the keyboard when I'm away from it. (His efforts are unintelligible but it's the thought the counts, right?) And Widget throws up much less than she used to. (or so I delude myself into thinking.) Once LuLu masters holding a bic lighter, she'll be the life of the party lighting her farts. (She has the farting thing down pat.)

I'd be willing to consider having you recruit one of them. They would, of course, require a generous compensation package, including medical, dental, and vision coverage, plus a vested retirement plan. Providing a company apartment, transportation and entertainment goes without saying. Also, relocation at your company's expense.

I'd also expect an appropriate finder's fee. Let me know if you wish to discuss the matter further.

Eric Friday, September 30, 2011 at 4:41:00 PM EDT  

I appreciate the offer. Do any of these employees know HTML, perchance? Graphic design experience would also be a plus.

Janiece Friday, September 30, 2011 at 4:58:00 PM EDT  

Boogie the Giant Schnauzer has informed me that if Elvis is wrongfully terminated, he will be leading a boycott against SOTSOGM, and intends to send a "cease and desist" letter forthwith.

Since Elvis is the only reason I come to this shithole, I'm inclined to join him.

Warner Friday, September 30, 2011 at 6:20:00 PM EDT  

Elvis is quite aware that he is more important than SOTSOGM and would you place future memos at the bottom of his litter box where they will do the most good.

Be glad he does not sit on your shoulder and criticize your technique with the mouse. Which Adlai Stevenson did often when I was learning a 4GL RDB

Nathan Friday, September 30, 2011 at 6:33:00 PM EDT  

My cats do HTML (hate mail, right?) in the form of hacking up hairballs where you're sure to step on them in bare feet. That what you had in mind?

And Boogie wins the internet.

Mr Lonely Saturday, October 1, 2011 at 6:22:00 AM EDT  

walking here with a smile. take care.. have a nice day ~ =D

Regards, (A Growing Teenager Diary) ..

Jeri Sunday, October 2, 2011 at 1:43:00 AM EDT  

Who hired Elf-cat anyway? And why did they think he'd be a media flack, instead of a photographer's model? Obviously there was a miscommunication re: job description.

Leanright,  Tuesday, October 4, 2011 at 3:22:00 PM EDT  

You'd failed to mention that he's also compensated with his own personal restroom. Why has that not yet been addressed?

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