Status: The good the bad the ugly, please

The Elevator Man


The Elevator man returned to his room sometime later. He wanted nothing more than to get back to work. While turning his key in the lock he paused, smiling. He smiled for a long time, a tired smile, a gentle smile, one of hope, one that we’ve all felt at one point or another, as if to say, “finally. Something good.” He hadn’t smiled like that in a long time, and if you were to have walked by him in that moment, in his favorite purple robe and his only slippers, you might’ve thought him the kindest face you’d ever seen.
He opened his door, and in the darkness, he noticed a blinking red light. It was his telephone’s answering machine. “One missed call,” it said. He pressed play.
“Elevator Man,” said a monotone voice.
“My God. Ms. Heathcliff?” he thought.
“Yes, this is your boss, as I’m sure you’ve enough wit to deduce. I won’t waste both of our time by drawing this out. It will be less painful for you, and that is my special gift to you, Elevator M... whatever your name is. You’re Fired. If you must weep then weep for yourself, because you’ve only yourself to blame. The regional manager of Dulcinea del Toboso is visiting tomorrow, and I simply cannot allow such unprofessional behavior to be put on display by one of my subordinates. When YOU look unprofessional, I look unprofessional, and I’ve never been unprofessional a day in my life. So, that’s that. But I’m feeling generous this evening, so I’ll give you a piece of advice, one that was given to me when just a child. Consider it your severance package: The elevator is only a box, nothing more. You must live for that box. You move when it moves. You break when it breaks. Do what you like inside that box, but do not leave and do not make a fuss. And make no mistake, you may operate that box, but you do not control it. Now, accept that and you may one day reach my level of professionalism. But I doubt it.
He sat at his down at his desk, heard the clutter of junk moving in the drawer, then felt the cold tension of his hand.