Send in the (Creepy) Clowns

it-sewer

(google, “It”)

Isn’t it weird?
how many are there
creepy clowns in South Carolina
causing a scare
(Don’t) send in the clowns . . .

Just when you thought the world couldn’t be more bizarre, what with  Donald Trump and his “Great Wall” of Mexico, and softening and hardening and softening (rinse and repeat) his stance on illegal immigration and his promise to deport “millions” of illegals within five minutes of being voted into office . . . here comes something new.

Creepy woodland clowns!

Yes, they appear to have taken up residence in Greenville County, South Carolina and are terrorizing children and adults.

This from The New York Times article “Creepy Clown Sightings in South Carolina Cause a Frenzy”:

A woman walking home late one night said she had seen a “large-figured” clown waving at her from under a streetlight, the police said. (She waved back.) And another woman said her son had heard clanging chains and a banging noise at his front door. In these cases, people who reported clown sightings refused to give their names to the police.

And I thought New York was weird!

Children have said that the clowns were offering them money to follow them into the woods; they apparently live in a house near a pond. The clowns seem to be targeting residents of a particular apartment complex. The police are receiving calls that the clowns have also been spotted at another apartment complex. What do they want?

People are armed and ready to defend themselves and their children against these ghoulish jesters.

As the Times article mentions, this may be a prank or publicity stunt of some kind, but that doesn’t seem to lessen the fears of the community.:

The pranksters, viral marketers and criminals may be taking advantage of a cultural fear of clowns, with examples including Mr. King’s “It,” and John Wayne Gacy, a serial killer who dressed as a clown. But Steven Schlozman, a child psychiatrist who teaches a course on the psychology of horror films at Harvard University, suggests that something more primal could be at work.

This brings to mind Ray Bradbury’s “The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street,” which was also made into a Twilight Zone episode. In this story, strange things start happening in a sleepy suburban town in Main Street, USA. The appliances stop working, lights go out and people start to panic. A resident says it’s like a science fiction story he read where an alien space ship came to earth and created a disturbance. Ultimately, neighbors who were friends begin to distrust one another and wonder if Joe or Jill next door might actually be the “alien.” I won’t ruin the ending for you, but it’s well worth the read or view.

It’s the ultimate “fear of the other” story, like the fear of the evil woodland clown. Perhaps the clowns are malicious or harmful, or perhaps they are simply preying on our basest fears and sitting back to watch a once benevolent community self-destruct.

Zombies for Hire

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(google image)

With the economy in crisis, and U.S. corporations compelled to downsize or rightsize staff wherever possible, some employers have come up with an edgy new solution: HIRE ZOMBIES.

Zombies are the wave of the future and an incredibly cost-efficient solution to transforming the office into a mean, lean machine.

The chief benefits of hiring zombie staff:

1.   Zombies work for free.
2,   Zombies don’t sleep so they can work lots of overtime
3.   Zombies don’t procreate, so they don’t go out on maternity leave, which can be such a hassle for the company in terms of substitute staffing and possible paid leave
4.   Zombies don’t get sick so they don’t require health insurance or sick days
5.   Zombies don’t need a 401K because they never retire
6.   Zombies are never late for work because they never leave the office. A special zombie barracks will be provided for zombies who want to rest when their bosses do not require their services. Big screen TVs with cable and Netflix will be made available to them so they can catch up on their favorite TV programs. One of their favorite movies is Warm Bodies. Yes, even zombies can fall in love.
7.  Zombies don’t make personal calls because they generally have no family or friends
8.  Zombies never complain (they barely speak)
9.  Zombies don’t decorate their work stations with plants, postcards, photographs and other paraphernalia, thus creating a more professional, sterile (as we like it) work environment
10.  Zombies are very strong so they can haul heavy boxes and engage in brute, physical labor without injury (and don’t require workmen’s compensation)

Challenges:

  1.  Zombies will have to be integrated slowly into the work environment, and non-zombie support staff will have to train them, which may be a source of friction.
  2.  Competition / animosity between non-zombie and zombie staff. Ultimate goal, of course, is to achieve an all-zombie staff.
  3.  Eating habits: Zombies are required to have a lunch break, which can be a messy venture. Some have been known to haul bloody carcasses to their work stations. Ground rules will have to be established as to where their “meals” can be consumed and clean up procedures afterward. Even zombies are expected to keep a pristine work station which will not offend outside clients. Zombies are expected to be as invisible/inoffensive as non-zombie staff.
  4.  Acclimatization to a non-human support staff: Bosses will have to adjust to zombie staff and their special needs. For example, zombies tend to mumble and they will have to be trained in proper telephone etiquette.
  5.  Odor: Most zombies are malodorous due their putrefying flesh. Teaching them proper hygiene and setting up powerful scent-blasters throughout the office space to ameliorate excessive stench are currently under discussion.
  6.  Some zombies may be attracted to humans, but there is a strict policy of non-fraternization between zombie and human employees.

So you see, the benefits clearly outweigh the challenges. Times are changing, evolving, and we can’t be set in our ways.

I know some of the human support staff out there may be asking, “What will happen to me? Will I lose my job?”

The answer is, “Not right away.”

A generous severance package will be provided to human staff who successfully train their zombie replacements. Also, it will take several years to reach 100% zombie staffing. Human employees will still have a place in society. If they have substantial savings, they can work independently or live off the land.

Embrace the pioneering spirit!

Pick yourselves up by your boot straps and explore a new destiny. Accept that zombies are the wave of the future, and you will be okay. And if you’re not, we really don’t care.