Life Is Hard Sometimes

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
The only true torment in life is attending corporate training seminars.

Submitted: March 01, 2014

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Submitted: March 01, 2014



"Good afternoon. I know, as leaders, you are all very busy and that being here is a sacrifice. I just want to say that I appreciate your time and attention as we embark on a learning excursion, together. My goal today is to give you the tools and knowledge necessary to be empathetic, emotionally aware and effective. What you learn over the next few hours might very well determine the success or failure of your business. I can say with complete confidence that, without our proven system, you will never accomplish what you are capable of, both as a manager and as a human being. I offer something that is transcendent, yet tailored to your needs. All that I ask is that you open your minds and hearts; dont give in to being siloed in your own world."

The instructor stood behind a lectern, shifting her weight from left to right, right to left as she animated her speech with her hands. She smiled as she finished her remarks and, with familiarity, walked to the trash can, throwing her notes in.

"Let's be honest. You didn't come her to listen to a lecture. You came her to be the best manager, you can be. So, let's get you involved, engaged and hands on with the program!"

The audience applauded her spontaneous unoriginality.

John did not. He sat at a round table. It was plastic, sterile and perfect for a corporate training session.

He scanned the room to see if any of the other participants failed to worship. There were none. He frowned.

Opening the class' brochure, he found high gloss photos of business casual men and women in awkward poses. Some appeared to be jumping in unison, overcome with joy at having received the secrets promised by the course. Others exhibited the confidence of reaching managerial nirvana; their arms crossed leaning back to back; eyebrows curled, they rejected with prejudice anyone who had not attained their level of mastery. John rolled his eyes with such gravity, he was afraid that he had moved objects in the room. 

He returned the brochure to his jacket packet, and leaned back in his chair. Running his hands through his hair, the chair creaked slightly under his movement.

"Sshh." The man on his right put his finger to his lips, moving deliberately, to ensure John knew it was for him. As the man returned his fixation to the instructor, who had returned to her lecture, John sat somewhat shocked by the exchange. He shifted slightly in his seat; it creaked again. He caught a glimpse of the woman on his left shaking her head and frowning. Sitting up, the chair creaked a third time.

"Excuse me, let's try to keep it down. We have a lot of material to get through. Respect everyone's time, please." The Instructor said in John's direction.

John leaned forward, in a effort to explain himself, but the instructor continued her lesson and, as every second passed, he felt it less and less appropriate to speak up.

Fearing another chair related episode, John was caught awkwardly on the edge of his seat. He decided to let his mind wander in an attempt to ignore both the psychological torture of the course's content and the growing, dull ache in his lower back.

As he drifted from subject to subject, he noticed a young, slender woman across the room. She sat with perfect posture. Her arched back accentuated her breasts; highlighted by a low cut blouse. Her tight skirt left little cover for her legs from the knee down, which ended in red stilettos. Her face, perfectly blended with makeup, was adorned by thin, scholarly glasses, matching her dark auburn hair.

Uncrossing her legs revealed, from John's perspective, a void too dark too see, but an ample light for the imagination. 

"You there." The instructor stood pointing at John. He, broken of the spell, was suddenly aware of the entire audience and their focus on him. He casually placed his intertwined hands over his crotch and crossed his legs in an attempt to hide his massive, throbbing erection.

"Yes?" he asked.

"You seem like a good candidate for our first exercise, please, join me in front of the class." The instructor held her hand out in John's direction and beckoned him with her fingers.

"Uhh, yeah, see I can't right now, I, uhh, no, sorry, maybe someone else." John shifted in his seat, a reaction to his increased blood flow and stress. He attempted to will away his predicament, forcing thoughts of baseball, old women and horrific injuries through his mind. Oddly, this only seemed to worsen his situation.

"What's your name, sir?" The instructor asked.

"John." He replied.

"Everyone, John needs a little encouragement. Let's give him some applause." The instructor said. She began a light clap that everyone in the room followed.

John, squirming in discomfort, noticed that the man who had silenced him earlier, clapped with a hint of jealously.

"I, uhh, I really can't. I appreciate the opportunity, but, you know. " John said.

The Instructor walked to John's seat and knelt on one knee in front of him.

"I know life is hard sometimes and getting up in front of all these people can be difficult. But this is a real moment for you, John. How can you be a leader later if you can't be a leader now?" The Instructor grabbed John's shoulder's as she spoke and peered into eyes. She was nearly in his lap. This did nothing to improve his situation.

"I uhh, I uhh." John stammered.

A few in the crowd cheered John; an attempt at motivation. All eyes were focused on him. Feeling he had no options left, no help, no escape. He stood up.

Being eye to eye with John, as the instructor was still on her knee, she gasped, recognizing her position.

"Oh my god." She yelled.

There were other gasps in the room as course participants realized what had transpired.

John did not look, but could feel the woman to his left shaking her head, frowning and disappointed.

Seizing the momentary silence his penis provided, he grabbed his laptop bag, held it in front of his crotch and walked briskly out of the class, smiling slightly as the door closed behind him.

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