Harry dedicated his life to finding the worst in everything. Negativity radiated outward, like water ripples on a breezy day. “Another beer, Barkeep,” He said. “This time–not so much foam. I’m not paying for air bubbles.” Every day, he commuted with, “the same idiots,” in their nondescript cars, with, “little engines that couldn’t.”
The main types of people in Harry’s world: “People that didn’t want to work; people who worked too hard getting out of work; people who screwed-up everything at work; people who didn’t appreciate what they had; and people who had what they deserved.” That left little room for pretenders to the throne. He never felt threatened by, disingenuous sycophants that feigned loyalty.
An aura of gloom and tension surrounded Harry obediently. Solemnity, was misread, as respect for authority. He couldn’t understand happy people. Wasn’t having a job enough happiness? Weren’t disgruntled employees hiding other things? Just the same, Harry kept his expectations low.
Helpful suggestions, weren’t welcomed. Harry couldn’t deal with change. Surprise parties, Secret Santas, office raffles, sent him into fits of rage. These sudden emotional storms were frightening. Left alone, frozen with fear, the perpetrators–never made the same mistakes again. While the rest of the cubicle rats scurried away and ducked for cover.
Fists clenched tightly against his chest–Harry shook with anger. Some claimed his face turned green. “He looked like an insane squirrel–I swear to God,” Said, Sid from accounting. As, he gave a buck-toothed squirrel imitation out of earshot. Sid was a master of exaggeration. His accounting department compatriots responded with restrained laughter.
“Harry, why so glum? You should be more chipper,” Said the man at the newsstand.
“Your papers should be cheaper,” Harry retorted. “Stick to selling papers. Aren’t these headlines the same as yesterdays?”
Harry’s barber Phil, finished, and patiently waited for the inevitable. “You call this a haircut? You should be paying me.”
Being hard to get along with kept people on their toes. Otherwise, they’d get lazy. Most people lied, about how many hours, they actually worked, in an eight-hour day. A solid six hours was about average. Dishonesty was worse than laziness.
These “Harryisms” were formulated over many years. People changed, policies changed–Harry didn’t. Whether, Harry’s aversion to happiness, was neurosis or sociopathic weirdness. No one knew.
Harry believed only in making money. It was a simple corollary–when people were happy, they got lazy–he lost money. When people were unhappy, they worked harder–he made more money. That kept him happy. Harry never shared secrets.