Hemhemballz IV - Dougie buys the Farm

by Chris Johnson

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It is a momentous day here at Hemhem as I run down the remnants of my own contract. As a result of being here long past my own sell by date, suddenly I hear that Dougie Antfarm has decided to shove off up the coast to take on duties at a County Council. It's a bit of a jump, from a dump like Hemhem to something that covers so many lives, but I think he'll soon cut it down to his own level. Let's face it, he has done it here and everywhere else he has been, so why change the habits of a lunchtime?

After murmurs and such, I turn up on Monday am and switch on my ancient beast (after first beating the peasants off; just cause I have a flat screen and they all have CRT's, they think they are somehow inferior... well....) and find an email waiting on my internal box: "IMPORTANT MSG FROM YOUR SERVICE DIRECTOR". Puffed up idiot, thinks I, but my interest is piqued, and I click the damn thing open...

Dear colleague

Yeah, sure. He gave the right to that soubrique back when he and his lackey threw me out last year! Sorry, Dougie-baby, you can call me SIR!

I am writing to formally let you know...

Where did this idiot study English?!? Has he never heard of getting to the point?

...I have been appointed as Director of Social Services for SomeOther County Council.

Poor schmucks! Don't they know what they are letting themselves in for? Anyway, some other schmoozing follows about what he's done recently then he promises a full description in goriest Hemhemcolour in the next "staff" newsletter (it is supposed to contain itemries of staff interest, but in fact it contains nothing but management propaganda. Any attempt by staff to enter anything of real interest is usually squashed, one way or another).

I have really enjoyed my time in Hemhem...

Of course he has! Who wouldn't enjoy swinging the axe in that way through two and a bit departments?

...and I hope I have managed to give to the services as much help and support as I have had given to me by all of you.

Nowhere near. You made sure that the staff were never close to sharp objects when in your presence.

Ah well, this is all very well, and the sounds of cheering around the borough will take a while to die down, but consider that now there will be a number of people that will be somewhat nervous about what the future may hold for them. Of course some of them will, no doubt, follow their leader up to the new abode given time (and a few manipulations of the job structure), but others will be left behind to the tender mercy of those who remain and are in the mood for a little light revenge.

Pimple will probably get away with it, since it was quite clear by the end that he was used as the patsy in a ploy to cut the folk in my former section down to size (byte size, if you will), and by the end of it all he was being crapped on from upon high as much as the rest of us. Pity he didn't see it coming. However Simple Sadie is much less likely to come out smelling of roses, especially as most of her plots tend to reek of the stuff roses are usually planted in! Need I remind the gentle reader of her many failed exploits of the past, and more importantly her record in the art of brutally distorting the truth? No. Add to that the fact that very few of the folk around her can actually stand her, all she can do now is gather her sycophants around her and hope that whoever takes over will be as big a bastard as the Antfarm.

Meanwhile, we have another thing to consider. The reorgasm was ordered by the previous Council. Yes, I said "previous". An interesting history occurs here. You see, back in the days of Joe-boy's wonderful all-purpose flagship, the Council suddenly found itself hung in favour of its previous opposition.

Sing hurrah and keep the flag flying!

Then the new Council started dabbling in the mystic arts of consultancies and business process re-engineering. They proclaimed upon high that this would be a new era for the corporation and the dead wood would soon be chopped free.

Praise be to the beancounters!!!

But then it all fell flat. The assembled team that was researching the project trod on a few too many toes, and the brown stuff was propelled towards the whirly thingy when the council leader, Ina Lather, was found doing some bed aerobics with another councillors' missus. Suddenly the ruling party became split and the opposition (the former ruling party) took over and cancelled the entire project.

Curses, foiled again!

So normality returned, but briefly, to Hemhem, and we all carried on in our own way, doing what had to be done. Then another election hove into view, and lo and behold, the reorgasmic party got back in. They had learned their lesson, however, and had booted out all the dissidents from their last sitting. And this time they had a cunning plan. A plan so cunning that it was made cunning plan of the year by the Association of Revolutionary Socialist Enterprises.

They took their plan and decided to try to w ork top down rather than bottom up. You see, by working top down, they got rid of the troublesome Directors like Joe-boy. They kept the bottom feeders such as Dougie-baby, who would do pretty much what they wanted. Then they kept going, getting rid of anyone they didn't like the look of.

The idea was that the corporation would shrink by 30%.

It didn't. All that happened was that they used the project and the ensuing policy of HMG to produce what amounted to a witch-hunt. Of course, services went down the drain, but who cared?

Well, the electorate did. The borough of Hemhem bucked the national trend and during the last week, they took all but 9 council seats from the ruling party and all but one seat from their allied lackeys. Uproar! No overall control, and the old ruling parties were suddenly trying to form alliances to keep some sort of grip on power! Well, it could happen, if the old ruling party combined with the ratepayers. However, considering it was said ratepayers (or the voters thereof) that effectively combined with the other opposition party to kick their sorry butts out of office... but this is politics. The only honest politician is an incredibly naive one (or a dead one!) and yes, they are considering it! At the time of writing, the various groups are fighting each other over the problem, the biggest group refusing to share power and might end up in opposition as a result, the former ruling party back in as ally of convenience despite being firmly voted out by the public!

No wonder Antfarm is on the move. Perhaps he has the right idea after all, though goodness knows it would probably be a first! Now, more than ever...

Shit's happening in Hemhem!

WANTED: Social Services Director. No experience necessary

Must have own tea bag.

Apply LB Hemhem (Inhuman Resources)

See how it all started! If this story seems a little confusing, then chances are that you have joined the mayhem part way through! To read the original Hemhemballs, click here and suspend your belief!
©2002 Chris Johnson

PDP-11 and RSTS/E is a trademark of Digital Equipment Co., part of HP/Compaq

All characters in this document have had their names changed in the interest of saving my butt legally and getting a few cheap laughs in places. Anyhow the events within this document actually happened but anyone who knows or can work out for themselves who the actual folk are, keep it to yourselves since I'm not interested in appearing in court to protect myself from this bunch of slimeballs.

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