Saturday, 7 July 2007

49: -99%

There is an emergency meeting called on the shop floor. The meeting is for all staff. We gather round, with bits of fruit and vegetables stuck to our shoes. There are six people in dark purple suits stood next to my boss. They are the only people without fruit and vegetables stuck to their shoes.

Now, says my boss. Then he says something else. It sounds like the most frantic, apologetic, confusing thing he has ever said. It makes way less than 16% sense. It goes swiftly and confusingly into minus figures. It creates a hole and then sucks small things into it; bits of dust, moths, fingernail clippings, etc. I feel them rush quietly past my ears and into the hole as my boss continues to speak.

The six people stood next to my boss look at him and nod.

Then he says two words at the end which I definitely understand. The words are ‘new’ and ‘managers’. He is looking at the people in the purple suits when he says this.

The people in the suits nod again and smile at us.

I look for Carmella. I see the top of her head, behind Dave who does the trolleys. Her head is moving a bit as if she is also nodding.

I try and think about the Philippines again.

Still nothing.


Danny said...

The most frightening and the best thing about this thing you are doing is that when I read it I start thinking the way you write it.

chris killen said...

i wouldn't wish that on anyone. but thank you.