The Boss – Part 1

Jason Scarsdale entered the room, sucking the air right out of it, his employees holding onto their last breath until he passed. They never knew what to expect when he arrived – perhaps in a good mood, but usually in an over-the-top sour one. Jason would bark out orders as he commandeered the space of the walkways going towards his office. It felt a bit like experiencing a re-creation of the movie “The Devil Wears Prada.” However, the company wasn’t a fashion magazine rather a lucrative automotive business catering to the rich and famous. The owner of this venture had the same personality as Miranda Priestly – everyone must toe the line, doing everything only one way, aloof but demanding, snobbish, very arrogant, and demeaning towards the employees – only in a male version.

He resembled Stephen Fry, who, in real life, comes off as a funny, gregarious, charismatic, intelligent, and a very down-to-earth guy. Jason looks inviting like you’d feel pretty good in his company, but you’d never feel that way again once you encountered him.

Today, Jason needed to interview candidates for a new personal assistant. Unfortunately, there were only three applicants. It seemed like the pool of qualified people, let alone willing ones, was dwindling each time an assistant was fired or quit. HR wished he could hold on to his assistants longer.

“Mr. Bronson, you may go in now,” said the receptionist with a smile. “Good luck to you,” she said sweetly.

“Thank you,” Glenn said nervously. For a minute, he wavered but ultimately went into the office. 

“Hello, Mr. Scarsdale, my name is Glenn Bronson,” reaching out his hand in Jason’s direction.

“Please put your hand down. I don’t shake people’s hands,” Jason said dismissively without even making eye contact.

“All right, sir, but may I ask why?” Glenn asked.

Jason slowly raised his head and stared at Glenn for what seemed like a lifetime before speaking. 

“I prefer that you never ask me why, ever, about anything,” Jason responded harshly. However, there was something about Glenn that made him change his mind. 

“But in this case, I will. I stopped shaking hands after the whole Covid-19 mess in 2020. It seemed prudent to do so, and well, I’ve gotten used to not doing it now. Satisfied?” he said, glaring at Glenn.

“Absolutely. Thank you for helping me understand that.”

The interview proceeded with various questions about education and experience, discussions of salary requirements, and the usual to determine whether he was qualified. Glenn seemed to be knowledgable about the automotive industry, which was a big plus.

All the candidates went home feeling confident they would be selected. They would know within a few days. Glenn seemed exceptionally sure he would get the job, especially since his mother gave him some excellent inside information about Jason Scarsdale. 

“Hi, Mom,” calling her when he got home from the interview. “I think I aced the interview. And not once did he figure out that you and I were related.”

The Chieftain

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Mike Martin had a reputation for being a hard boss. Not just your run-of-the-mill difficult but the exceptionally prickish kind. The people who worked for him took a lot of abuse – along with condescension, irrational demands, and a gross amount of unwillingness to compromise.

Quitting him meant you wore a badge of honor and ended up in the “I survived Mike Martin” Club! No more taking his shit, and your life would return to sanity once more.

Hurray! He just lost another employee. Poor unable-to-take-no-for-an answer Mike, pretty soon he’ll be an empire of one fending for himself.

Justice.

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