Dave used to work for me. He transferred from another department when he applied for a more senior position in my team. He interviewed extremely well, in fact he interviewed so well I got a little suspicious. Another guy who worked for me had already told me about Dave because he used to work with him in another place. Dave was a great writer, he just didn't produce anything.
So I interviewed Dave. I was told I had to hire Dave as an internal promotion was preferable. Dave become one of mine.
Within two weeks I felt like Dave and I were long lost soul mates. We had so much in common. Even our cats looked exactly the same even though Dave's was male and mine is female. I was a little perplexed knowing myself well enough to know that I don't bond with people that easily and with the cultural background difference and all. I turned to an older team member one day and told him how I felt like Dave and I were so alike it was scary, and that I was a little perplexed by it. He turned to me and said "Oh, my god! I feel exactly the same way about Dave!"
Now me and this other team member are good friends but we are like chalk and cheese (I'm the cheese because it tastes better). We stood there and looked at each other for a while with puzzlement on our little chubby faces until our eyes narrowed in suspicion and we began to watch Dave more closely.
Cut a long story short.
It didn't take much watching.
Dave was, as I mentioned, a brilliant writer. In fact he could have written for any law magazine and not had a problem with it. He could however not write for our audience which is, and I quote, "people who basically come straight out of 7 Eleven to become techs" as a manager of past used to say.
The people we write for are clever with tools and repairs but they're not book smart as a rule. They're certainly not the kind of people who read James Joyce for funsies but then I don't know anyone who does really. Oh well with the exception of that batty Swedish teacher I had way back in my other life when I did my engineering course but she was bloody batty that woman. Her signature was in the shape of a dachshund and she had even signed her passport that way.
Anyway. Dave. Dave was also sneaky we found out.
He had made friends with a guy in IT and found out what the only open port on the network was, the port that was open only so that antivirus software could update several times per day, and he was using it to talk to friends using Communicator. He tunneled out so he could chat. Strictly verboten (as in banned) since our was the business of development and the industry I work in is highly regulated.
I was thinking Dave was typing an awful lot even for a writer. I found that Dave had a nasty internet chatting habit. An investigation by IT found that he also had several pirated versions of software and a tonne of illegally downloaded mp3s.
That whole business was almost enough to get Dave sacked but not quite. I had to focus on the giant performance issue I had on my hands, Dave was producing nothing really and that while being handsomely paid, so performance management was the solution according to human resources.
We never really got that far with managing Dave's performance because he resigned and went to work for another major corporation. We've been keeping an eye on that company's share price ever since. We were afraid that them having employed Dave would have a negative impact on the share price.
Three years on and impeccably timed I receive this from my long lost pal Dave:
I hope you're not well and that life is treating you really poorly. You're an absolute b|tch, a horrible and nasty person. You're ugly, fat and unattractive. You're disgusting and filthy. I would even go so far as to say that you're a stupid fcuking mole of a cnut!
Shucks Dave! I didn't know you cared! After all this time you finally let me know that you've been thinking about me and that in the most intense fashion apparently.
Now I don't like to put people down (and I suppose this is the moment this post becomes an open letter to Dave really) but you probably would have been better off removing your actual name from the sender thing on your hotmail account. I googled your hotmail e-mail address and found it on a forum that deals exclusively with that sport you love so much, you know the one you kept talking about? At that moment I knew that it was you who had actually sent that e-mail.
Not being satisfied with that alone, and being bored at lunch time, I googled your name and found that you have a webpage where you promote yourself as a photographer. You even list that forum site I found your hotmail e-mail address on as your fave site. Sweet! So not only can I now be absolutely certain that it's you who sent the "love letter" but also that you're not an opponent worthy of my attention.
I will not know if you will send me more e-mails because IT blocked your e-mail address today. HR requested it. I was told not to reply because that's what all good cyber-bully victims refrain from doing. Cyber-bully victims don't have right of reply or they can't be bothered. I forget which.
I have to admit that I was tempted to e-mail back correcting the spelling mistakes but the sentence structure and grammar is impeccable, no?
If was to reply to Dave it would probably be something along these lines:
Great to hear from you finally! I've been wondering how you went after leaving
Hope this e-mail finds you well and if you ever need a reference please don't hesitate to ask.
Take care now!
stupid fcuking mole of a cnut
P.S. Sorry about the Krispy Kreme doughnut stain on this e-mail, those suckers are so sticky!
P.P.S. About the fucking thing, well let's just say I have a nasty infection right now, so if you can wait that would be great!"
Medication prevents it but since Dave's website lists his favorite club in town, he describes himself and the resident photographer there, I would love to be able to be a little creepy by turning up there to say hi.
But better still I would love to print out his little e-mail, cut out the actual message section and leave that cut out on his doorstep because you see that would be creepy, that would be very creepy indeed.