Convention has a handshake like the Mafia.
Even when we resign from a job, even when we truly feel the people we worked with were weasels of the worst order, our idea of "the done thing" means we invite everyone for a painful beer in a local bar. We even buy them doughnuts.
Now one brave soul has perhaps not merely flouted convention, but, with one heartfelt e-mail, drop-kicked it to Hades.
According to The Chive.com, the e-mail was written by a senior media planner at a Chicago ad agency (I have a feeling I just might recognize which one), a man with a hearty sense of self-expression.
The e-mail's form, and, somehow, its content, does actually suggest that this missive might be real.
Although one should bear in mind that The Chive has occasionally been responsible for perpetrating some dubious exercises, such as the skyscraperish tale of a girl who accidentally sent a text to her dad after losing her virginity on a class trip. (Guess what? It was a hoax.)
Still, let us, for the purposes of a happy Saturday, reserve our judgment, as the e-mail has some delightful moments.
The departing senior media planner declares, for example, that it is his express intention to spare his co-workers the cliche e-mail. Instead he offers 10 reasons why he quite simply had enough.
At No. 10, he offers: "I've added it up, and with the hours I log in a given week, I don't even make minimum wage. True story."
He goes on to lament the agency's inadequate attempts at downsizing, which he characterizes as "you fired all the cool people." Both these occurrences do bear a remarkable resemblance to current realities in the ad business.
No. 5 is a deeply sincere gem: "So that I don't have to ask you how your weekend was--I don't care. It's exhausting listening to you and pretending to care and then sugar coating my own weekend stories so that you don't recoil in horror."
No. 4 might make some online advertisers pause for a meeting with their, um, media planners. It seems to be a somewhat troubled criticism of those nice people at ComScore. Well, the unnamed media planner did work very long hours.
No. 2 is a very sad story of technology gone awry: "A rep gave me a fancy USB memory stick with their logo on it last year for Christmas. I diligently saved all my work only to have it take a (dump) on me right when I was thinking about quitting this job."
Did I mention that he is alleged to have sent this e-mail company-wide? Well, what must have everyone made of his No. 1 reason for quitting this obviously fine place of work?
With a final flourish, he said: "I've gotten 3 job title promotions since I've been here but no raise. I'll bet if I asked to be promoted to Senior Media Planner Ninja-Czar, I'd get it with a pay freeze until 2020."
He is, he declared, leaving to become "a looper in the Himalayas."
But perhaps, when this ugly recession is over, this senior media planner and potential Ninja-Czar might consider a future in writing ads rather than planning media space.
Just like Dudley Moore in "Crazy People," he might be able to usher in a new era of spectacularly honest advertising. Unless, of course, this whole e-mail, though reeking of a certain reality, is just another elaborate, page-view enticing invention. It couldn't be that, could it?