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flash fiction story by Hugh Cook

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An Entry Level Job

        "It's an entry-level job, son," said Mandelbrot, the Vortlob Placements Manager. "An entry level job, but you'll go places. Sign here."
        The kid signed and Mandelbrot led him to the workstation, strapped him in and pressed the button. With a shrill scream of dentist drills, the kid began to spin, vanishing into a blur of productivity.
        When the session slowed and the kid became visible again, he was fifty years older, gray-haired, toothless.
        "Clock or paperknife?" asked Mandelbrot, helping the kid stand.
        "What?" said the kid, blankly.
        "Your choice of retirement gift," said Mandelbrot patiently. "Clock or paperknife?"
        Without replying, the kid took one out-of-focus step toward the exit then pitched forward, stone dead. Mandelbrot sighed. Dead on the premises, so the company would have to pay for the autopsy. And the cremation.
        "These labor laws," said Mandelbrot, shaking his head. "They'll be the death of productivity in this country."

the end

This flash fiction AN ENTRY LEVEL JOB
first posted online
2004 February 16 Monday
Copyright © 2004 Hugh Cook
all rights reserved.

productivity story labor law story labor laws story flash fiction story on working life


So he was out, free from the computer quest world. The real world, by contrast

" .... so they shoved the gag in my mouth. Then they pulled the hood down over my face."

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