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Noel Schroeder sat between Ann Coulter and Bono Vox on the set of Oprah. Before the commercial break, he'd announced a new MoonSnaps product he was to unveil exclusively on the show.
The pasty, haggard faces of the studio audience looked on in eager anticipation. Even Ms. Coulter and Mr. Vox ceased their petty sniping. Dear friends, both, of Mr. Schroeder. He'd invited them on, personally, certain his new product could bring us all closer together, despite our disparate worldviews. We could all be eye to eye, on the same page. A page he liked to call "the Human Page.-
The audience sipped complimentary MoonSnaps latte's, cappuccinos and MoonIce blended ice coffee beverages out of commemorative MoonSnaps gunmetal travel mugs.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Helped along by the free caffeine, the audience's excitement became one thick, palpable vibration. They knew they were about to witness was something monolithic, this unveiling. They were going to leave the studio different people than when they came in.
A screen descended from behind Noel Schroeder. On it was a pair of glistening red lips, parted suggestively, and a bent, spent straw. Underneath, in gold, cursive script, were the words MoonSnaps Java Fellacino- Oh Man, You Have No Idea.
Larry sat watching Oprah in his living room, a can of Icehouse propped between his legs, and a bunch of half- empties surrounding his chair. He was still in his green and purple MoonSnaps uniform; he hadn't even bothered to take off the visor. Now all those mysterious promotional packets that had been arriving at his store made sense, as did the distribution of lip balm. He wondered why his sweaty, obese Samoan manager, Neil, had told him, when handing him his cappuccino-flavored tin of Carmex, "not for them, for you.-
Larry thought well now, isn't this a shitty surprise?
At the end of the show Noel Schroeder, Bono, Ann Coulter and Oprah all led the audience out of the studio and into the street for a MoonSnaps sponsored World Hug. They went across the street, to Wishbone, and hugged the all the staff and patrons there. They worked their way to Ashland, hugging every migrant worker, gangbanger and yuppie on the way there. The whole thing was being broadcast live. The World Hug eventually became a Hug Crawl, as Oprah, Schroeder and company worked their way through Wicker Park, passing out complimentary MoonSnaps swag to the happy hour crowd.
MoonSnaps began as a failing, fledgling coffee roaster/ wholesaler. After being bought by Noel Schroeder, a former street kid with an uncanny business savvy, it eventually became the country's, then the world's leading coffee wholesale and retail operation.
Schroeder's mission, the one that guided him into success and will continue to guide him despite it, is to make quality coffee and quality coffee products as widely available to as great a cross section of the public as possible. He will not rest until every man, woman and child, from the richest to the poorest, knows the taste of his brew.
Larry watched the world hug/ hug crawl spectacle as he killed the rest of his case of Icehouse. That cemented it, the world was too happy and this new product was going to be a fucking pain in the ass. In addition to that he was pretty certain he was going to be hungover the next day, and probably hung over something fierce.
Used to be, there was a time, Larry would quit a shit job if he was hungover. Fuck it, can't do that shit now. Now he had to be an adult and at least show up.
Thing was...even though they upped the health plan with the arrival of this new product, they did it to cover their asses. All MoonSnaps employees had already been made to sign a stack of forms the thickness of Ulysses, all written in cryptic legalese by a team of smarmy, greasy pinstriped weasel cocks.
There was nothing any MoonSnaps employee could do, except maybe quit, lose the health plan and the stock options. Many were left with festering wounds and missing digits as a result of some espresso machine mishap, and couldn't survive without the health plan.
Boy...doesn't that ever suck?
Noel Schroeder flew to Sudan, to meet with the management and sharecroppers at one of his many coffee plantations.
In his Sudanese mansion, in the vast and elegant dining hall, alone at a long table that seated ninety, under the scattered luminescence of a chandelier the size of a storm cloud, Noel dined alone. He feasted on basted and pan-fried infant, a delicacy, apparently, in Sudan. It was, at least, as far as he was concerned. The migrant peasant workers graciously offered up a few of their unwanted children to sate the mighty appetite of their socially responsible coffee savior.
Larry walked by his work a good hour before he was scheduled to be there. He considered getting a bagel and a cup of coffee there, he had a winning headache, but opted against it when he saw a line around the block. The line consisted mainly of men- construction workers, cops, florists. Larry looked in the window of MoonSnaps and saw his co-workers, male and female, leading the testosterone fuelled customers into the restrooms, where they were sampling the new MoonSnaps product. The inspirational world hug event on TV bought the men, and a few women, out in droves.
Noel Schroeder lay on his giant green rotating bed and thought on his new sales campaign while being pleasured by a league of prepubescent peasant girls. The same virginal underage peasants, matter of fact, had been the genesis for his Fellacino idea. Their seductive, nubile mouths, he was certain, could drum up his creativity. At least much more than the Teutonic model he married and thus used for sperm storage purposes. She was fine for breeding, but she just didn't inspire the way his randy brown slaves did.
The Fellacino was his most successful promotion since the Celebrate Gluttony festival.
Larry decided to go ahead and get his shit day over with. After all, how hard could it be? It was just more bullshit. Just another crappy novelty the gullible public lost their collective shot over before almost losing interest. At that point Noel Schroeder and his board of directors would have to devise a new gastric toy for them to lose their shit over. Larry wondered if he'd had a hand in the blame. Maybe somebody'd overheard him refer to the lines of customers as a parade of cocksuckery and this was the literal, logical consequence.
The MoonSnaps Larry worked in was one of four million worldwide. One of the annoying slogans Noel Schroeder liked printing on MoonSnaps cups and lids were "A personal MoonSnaps for everyone."Larry had heard him vow, on Oprah, that he wouldn't rest until he'd made this a reality. Many MoonSnaps employees were already in the habit of spending their lunch breaks in other MoonSnaps. Schroeder had also vowed, on Oprah, that he wouldn't rest until everybody in the world was either in front of a MoonSnaps counter or behind one...and that, as a result, the world would be much nicer
Scabby Ron passed himself in the mirror. He was covered in scabs. It was completely disgusting to everyone but him. He actually kind of liked it. He thought it was pretty hot. He couldn't understand why he was so lonely and why nobody wanted to pleasure him in a sexual manner. After all, he was just as attractive as anyone else with the added appeal of being covered in crusty, oozing, peeling scabs. He wasn't a complicated person, all he wanted were a few simple pleasures- coffee, cheese Danish, fellatio.
Scabby Ron thanked god for MoonSnaps and it's new product.
One of Larry's co-workers was a wiry, excitable, glassy eyed sycophant. He displayed an amount of zeal for MoonSnaps that can only be described as very disturbing. He owned, among other things, an embossed gunmetal MoonSnaps lunch box. His hat and apron were covered in bronze and pewter exceptional service pins. Every time a new promotion was announced at employee meetings he squealed and clapped like a cheerleader with Down's syndrome. His name was Mike.
Mike seemed so fond of this promotion that Larry had no squabbles with his conscience when he ducked out the moment Scabby Ron walked in.
From the book Full Flavored, How MoonSnaps Changed the World One Cup at a Time:
Noel Schroeder grew up in Portland, Oregon's toughest housing projects. As a child, his father, Ricky, would punish him with beatings and sodomy. Sometimes, to put food on the table, Ricky would prostitute Noel's mother. Sometimes he'd even prostitute himself, but only hand jobs.
Growing up in the projects, Noel acquired many Negro friends and friends of other color, resulting in street credibility. He'd opted out of a lot of his friends' criminal enterprise, earning him the nickname Big No, but they all respected him.
Mike the sycophant got a mouth full of Scabby Ron. Ron seemed satisfied, Mike didn't seem to care for it but no sacrifice is too great for MoonSnaps. Mike was a creepy brownie- hound but Larry had to admit he did have a point about some things. Mike worked at MoonSnaps because he genuinely liked it, and didn't think anybody should work anywhere just for a paycheck. If you hate it so much, he'd say, find something else. Well...no shit, sure, but it just wasn't that easy. Actually enjoying what you do for money seemed, to Larry, a little perverse.
Noel Schroeder, though a poor student, proved to be an adept card and pool player. In addition to that he'd been a prodigious athlete, lettering in track, baseball, football, basketball and men's division synchronized swimming. He never fully adopted the illegitimate business practices and resulting lifestyle favored by many of his peers. He did, however, hold his place in an economy outside of the mainstream workaday world by utilizing his gambling skills. This earned him the respect of those in his neighborhood, a neighborhood where such respect was essential to survival. His skills also propelled him into his future success.
The public that patronized MoonSnaps continued being the public. The public is a stupid animal; customers are stupid animals- inbred bovine, greedy mouth breathing myopic pole-smokers. They see a line extending out the door and stand in the back of it. They piss and moan about having to stand in the back of a line they voluntarily got in. They get to the front of the line and count out their pennies, oblivious to the line behind them. Now that they're at the front of it fuck everyone else. All because business owners never deal with the public they create.
Noel Schroeder began his tenure with MoonSnaps as a barista. He quickly moved up to manager by way of his persuasive sales skills. As one former district manager put it, "that boy could sell ass to a black woman."At one point he did. He did that very thing. Literally. He sold it to all of them. Don't believe it? Hey, look at the proof. Proof is in the results.
He eventually moved up the ranks to district manager, then regional director. He would've been passed up for CEO, however, had he not won the position in a card game.
Noel Schroeder announced to his faithful employees that, due to changes in the fickle economy he was going to have to make a few changes in payroll. No, there wasn't going to be any downsizing or layoffs, nor would he sacrifice employee benefits such as the health plan and the stock options. What he was going to have to do, however, involved some jugglng with the wage rate. The Paid in Pastry Plan involved compensating workers with day old baked goods, to supplement their pay cut, which could be used to barter for goods and services.
Sounded good to him.
The first customer that approached Larry about trying the new MoonSnaps product was a heavily cologned, semi- muscular older man with a blonde receding hairline. He came in, sucking on a long blade of grass and asking, "could you tell me about it? I'm real interested." Larry said, "umm...it's kinda not really as great as they say it is." He'd wanted to say, "fucking...it's a coffee blow job, you nasty fag, what do you think it is?" But he didn't, and the man said,"well that's not what you're supposed to say." Larry knew he was from marketing.
Larry decided he'd call in sick, forgetting what an unwise idea that was. Whenever anybody called in sick, a group of about five concerned MoonSnaps wel wishers visited the sick person at his home, bearing medicine, food, juice, teddy bears and balloons. Sometime Noel Schroeder himself was with the group, and sometimes these visits took place in front of Oprah's camera crew, with Oprah present. A few times, Oprah viewers were treated to the sight of some poor hung over soul, or somebody playing hooky. If somebody was hung over Noel Schroeder would put him through a treatment program.
If anybody plays hooky, the group of well wishers express great disappointment, ask what MoonSnaps, as a company, can do to gain more loyalty for them, and write the employee's name in a black book. Thing is, nobody ever actually gets fired from MoonSnaps, some people just keep getting written up. Aperson could, allegedly, get written up ad infinitum without getting fired, or even suspended. People have been known to disappear, but they always comeback. Sometimes with a minor attitude adjustment, sometimes without. Either way, if you call in sick, and you're not, you should at least fake it
Larry's gaggle of well wishers arrived at his house at about noon. They found Larry to not be there, he was out getting an ice cream cone. The well wishers waited. They waited as Larry shopped, paid a couple of bills, had a lunch that included a turkey sub from Potbelly's with salt and vinegar chips, a cookie and a cup of ice tea. After a few hours the well wishers sent a couple of their group off to try to find their co-worker while the rest waited. It became obvious Larry wasn't sick, unless he was at the hospital.
Larry, as he ran around not making cappuccinos and giving blow jobs at MoonSnaps, suddenly remembered they'd be sending people to his house. Scary people that are too nice and too benevolent and want to shower him with gifts and balloons. Fuck, why can't any of his co-workers just be normal, just a little, just half the time, a quarter of the time? Well, he sat at a barstool and tried to figure out what he had to do. He chatted with the bartender awhile and the bartender interrupted their conversation to answer a phone call. Then they found him.
In front of Oprah's cameras, Larry was dragged back home told to put on his MoonSnaps uniform and return to work. The bartender, it turned out, had a hotline to MoonSnaps and knew he was supposed to be sick that day. The bartender told him, "should've gone to work, man. Now when you really are sick they won't believe you." Larry had downed a couple of beers and was riding a light buzz, which made the whole thing easier. He slogged home, picked up his wrinkled and unwashed work garb from various areas of the floor and furniture, and dressed.
Larry slogged through his day at work, all to the disgust of Oprah, the co-workers who came bearing gifts, the other co-workers, and the entirety of the world's population that saw the spectacle on Oprah and got their morning pick-me-up at MoonSnaps. Several customers complained that their afternoon Fellaccinos were "toothy."Larry was reminded that, like all their products, the MoonSnaps Fellaccino was to be finely crafted, a thing to take pride in.
Noel Schroeder himself wanted a personal meeting with Larry. He provided him with free Oprah tickets and asked him to please, please join him on the show.
Noel sat Larry down and offered him a cup of coffee. Larry said he'd had about his fill of coffee, but told Noel he'd be interested in seeing him make one of these much hyped Fellaccinos himself. Noel just kind of chuckled and said that he didn't come up with the Fellaccino himself,that was more the product of his marketing department. However, if Larry was interested in trying one he could visit another MoonSnaps in his off time, or have one marked out if he'd like to enjoy it at work. Larry said, "I think I'll pass."
Noel sighed and told Larry, "okay, fine, suit yourself" and Larry left. On the way out he punched the air and thought to himself, "yeah, I sure showed that blowhard how it's done." Larry then resolved to quit the next day. He'd never get fired, hard as he tried. There was no choice but to quit and tell all his goony, sycophantic coffee and blowjobbot co-workers and all the drooling retarded asshole customers to go and motherfuck themselves. He'd go on to tell them things like "kneel to daddy" and "you can't fuck me, I don't even have an asshole."
Larry strutted into MoonSnaps. Two of his co-workers were in the middle of making Fellaccinos. Larry just looked over and smirked at them. He walked into the back office where the store's new manager, Todd, was in a meeting with Noel. Noel introduced Larry to Todd, the new manager. Larry said, "hey, nice to meet you and all that good shit but I'm about to vamos so..." Todd and Noel looked at one another and laughed. Then Noel looked at Larry, smiled sweetly and said, "Oh Larry, you can clock out any time you like, but you can never leave.
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