April 4, 2015 1 Comment
It was a Friday and Kevin was frustrated, not annoyed, just frustrated. Although he knew himself well enough to know that this frustration could lead to anger. And if Kevin got angry…..well, nobody liked Kevin when he was angry, least of all his co-workers, and certainly not Kevin. He hated himself for it, but sometimes he just couldn’t help it.
Kevin had actually had a very good day up until now. He’d woken up feeling refreshed, the eggs he’d eaten for breakfast were soft boiled to perfection so he could dip every soldier in, he had had a great mid-year appraisal from his boss Jeff, and he had managed to correlate all the figures from last week’s KTS reports. Even with all this joy in Kevin’s life, frustration was threating to get the best of him.
He had just sat down at his desk after coming back from lunch and a smell had caught his attention. It instantly put an image from his childhood in his head. Unfortunately all the memory showed was him looking through the eyes of a mask up at a table full of people who were all looking at something in the middle of the table. What was it on the table? He had to know. Oh he really had to know.
Stuart, one of Kevin’s co-workers, was the first to spot the rising levels of frustration in Kevin. All the usual signs were showing, the scratching of his head just above the right ear, the loosening of the tie, the erratic blinking that looked like Morse code without the sound. And the sweating had begun too, oh the profuse sweating.
Stuart emailed Tom and Kate to alert them, but purposefully chose not to tell Brian, the only other co-worker in their team. Stuart had his reasons for this; past disagreements with Brian over whether the Incredible Hulk could beat Superman in a straight up fist fight was one, the fact that Brian’s desk faced away from Kevin’s was another, but mostly it was because Stuart was a bit of a twat.
Tom looked up from his monitor after receiving Stuarts email and looked over at Kevin; Tom was not in the mood for this. He remembered the last time Kevin had got angry. It was his old colleague James who had got the full brunt it. He really missed James some days. In that particular incident Tom had been casually talking to all his co-workers, about cooking a fancy meal for his girlfriend. Stuart had joked that Tom would burn a salad. Kevin had interjected with, what was in hindsight, a useful tip regarding seasoning fresh meat. James had quipped that Kevin couldn’t boil an egg, and this comment had the effect of turning Kevin in to what Stuart had once coined in an email as Krazy Kevin Kaka.
When Kate saw that Brian was not included on the email, she was very pissed off with Stuart. It wasn’t that she particularly liked Brian, it’s just that Brian had the excel skills she needed to finish the work she was doing. Tom and Stuart were useless at creating pivot tables, Kevin was alright at it, but she wasn’t about to ask him. She was just thinking she ought to forward the email to Brian, when she looked up and saw Kevin shaking with rage and starting to rise from his seat. Tom and Stuart were already pulling the old ‘pretend to be on the phone’ trick that had worked quite well during past outbursts. It had worked well as a deflection of attention when the likes of Mary, Frank and Jerome had left the team. Kate made the decision to look after number one (as she normally did) and picked up her phone and started spouting all sorts of corporate bullshit to a dial tone.
Brian was eating an egg mayo sandwich whilst concentrating on his work. Well it wasn’t so much his work as it was Kate’s. He was sorting all the formulas on a table she had been working on. He did it just because she’d asked. God, Brian really fancied Kate, she was so beautiful to him. He was even putting some nice colours on it to highlight certain data. The first he knew about Kevin having one of his outbursts was while he was applying a lovely shade of vermillion to a set of figures. He heard the Krazy Kevin Kry (another doozy from Stuart) behind him that was so shrill that that he had to shut his eyes. When Brian’s eyes reopened it was with surprise that instead of facing his monitor he was facing towards the beautiful Kate, which was odd as she diagonally behind him. It was nice that he had got to see her one last time before his neck snapped. Kevin instantly relaxed, as he always did after one of his ‘outbursts’.
Kate quickly stood up from her chair. ‘For fucks sake Kevin!’ She exclaimed. ‘I really needed Brian to finish my report.’
Stuart, Tom looked at each other with looks of pure awkwardness.
Kevin hung his head in shame. ‘I’m sorry’ he said. ‘You won’t tell Jeff about this will you?’
The silence continued for what felt like an age until finally Kate said, ‘It’s a good thing you’re a whizz at accounting Kevin. And you’re going to finish my report’ she added. Kevin nodded and went back to his desk.
Tom and Stuart breathed a sigh of relief and smiled.
Stuart, who could never resist a quip after an awkward silence said,
‘Well I always thought Brian was a pain in the neck’.
‘Did you get that from an Arnie movie or something? Said Tom.
‘No’ said Stuart.
‘Well it was shit’ said Tom.
‘You’re shit’ said Stuart.
This made Kevin smile, and as he got stuck into completing Kate’s report, he suddenly remembered what was on the table. It was just an egg. Silly Kevin.