The Reality Institute

Want Ads by Michael Molitch-Hou

Warehouse job opening now!!!
exporter looking for warehouse assistant, full time.
1. shipping/receiving Asst.
2. handle RMA returns by use phone and email
3. good team work
4. good English
5. work time Mon. to Fri. 8:30am-5:30pm. (one hour lunch time)
call Timothy, Warehouse Manager: XXX-XXX-XXXX

William Buckley went into his first day of work at the Babbling Baby Baby Bottling Company. He had yet to work in a warehouse in his life.  He went into work prepared to work hard to pay the bills.

When William arrived at the Babbling Baby Baby Bottling Company, he parked in a large company parking garage where he was greeted by the automated ticket dispenser.  “Welcome to the Babbling Baby Baby Bottling Company! Visitors may park on levels carp through cod and employees may park on levels bass through trout. Thank you and have a nice day!”  After parking his car, William noted the level and location that his car was located on.  Each level was given with a fish and each section was given a color.  William had parked in Deep Blue Sturgeon.

He made his way over to the exit and took the elevator down to the lobby.  In the lobby, William saw that the receptionist was on a bathroom break and had left a sign that said “Back in 5 minutes”.  Rather than wait and run the risk of being late to his first day on the job, William glanced over the building directory on the wall and found the location of the warehouse.  He walked down a long hallway and found a set of stairs that led to where he supposed to warehouse to be.  At the bottom of the stairs, William saw a small desk, a door, and a chair.  Above the door was a sign that read “WAREHOUSE” in bold black writing.  On top of the desk was a stack of forms and a pencil.  William looked at the forms and recognized them as standard tax and employment registration forms.  He filled them out and looked around for a minute.  He saw a slot on the wall that read “Completed Forms”.  William placed the forms in the slot and went through the door.

He stepped into a large warehouse filled with boxes, two desks, two tables, and a man standing behind one table.

“Hi,” William said to the man, “I’m the new warehouse assistant, William Buckley.” There was some noise coming from the man’s work area.

“Hi, I’m James. Let me show you what you’re going to be doing.”

James showed William the work he would be doing, which was relatively simple.  He would check the quality of the bottles, the quality of the babies, and then insert the babies into the bottles and the bottles into the packaging.  Then the packages would be placed into a box and shipped to expectant parents all over the world.

“Then we put the boxes on the palettes, put the palettes in the freight elevator, and they’re shipped to expectant parents all over the world.  Why don’t you get started by putting the already bottled babies into the packages and the packages into the boxes?”

William had no problem doing this task at all.  The babies looked innocent and hopeful in the clouded yellow of the high-end, boutique baby bottles. He followed through with his job, letting his hands do the work while he watched James and made occasional conversation.

“Where you from, James?”

“Liverpool, South England.”

“That’s interesting.”

“Yeah.” James said cheerfully.

“How long have you been working here?”

“You know, you sort of lose track after awhile!” James laughed, “I don’t know.  Maybe 3 years?”

“Oh,” replied William.

“Where are you from?”

“From around here.”


They continued working for some time.  A quiet radio hummed in the background to distract from the noise at James’s table.  William checked the clock on the wall behind him, but could not quite make out the numbers.  They seemed to be blurry or smudged or something and the hands of the clock were almost the same color as the background, making it impossible to distinguish the time. He continued shoving baby bottles into packages and packages into boxes, taping the boxes and placing them on the palette to go out.

“Why don’t you switch places with me for a little bit?  Let me show you how to check the babies for imperfections.”

William walked over to the table where James was working.  James pulled a baby out of the box and held it up to the light between his thumb and forefinger.

“See,” said James, “what you want to do is check to see if there are any scratches, bruises, discolorations, black specks, or dents.  If there are, you check a tally mark off on this piece of paper.  Then put them in this box.  The good ones put back in the bottles and send them over to me.  See,” James said, holding up a baby, “this one has black specks.  This,” James said holding up another, “has a few scratches and a dent.”

“Okay,” replied William.

“It should take about three seconds to check.  Just use your own judgment.  If there aren’t too many things wrong with it, just put it in the box to send to me.  Just ask yourself, ‘Would I buy this baby?’ and you should be fine, you know?”

“Okay,” replied William.

“It’s not too hard.  This shipment is pretty good compared to the last one.”

“The last one had a lot of bad ones?”

“Oh yeah,” James said and laughed, “a lot of deformities. Sometimes they had skin as thin as paper.  Make sure you check for that too. You’ll feel it.”

“Okay.”  William checked the babies, crying constantly, for malformations.  He looked one red-faced infant in the eyes for a long time.  The baby stared and ceased crying momentarily.  William squinted and leaned in close the child’s face.  He thought for a moment.  “Hey, James, is this a malformation?” indicating a bump on the eyebrow.

“Hm…” James said examining the bump.  “Eh, it’s not too noticeable.”

William placed the baby in the bottle and sent it over to James to be packaged.  He continued his work mindlessly for a bit, scanning for deformities.  He found one with an obvious discoloration and scratch.  As he threw it into the box of damaged goods, he asked James, “So where do the damaged ones go?”

“We donate them to barren women who can’t afford to buy babies.”

“Oh,” William said, returning to his work for a minute.  “So the people who buy the babies have more money?”

“Enough to buy our boutique baby bottles.”

“Oh. What happens if they get a deformed one?”

“They get sent back and the company takes a hit.”

As he was placing the babies into the bottles for some time, he thought of ways to make the job more interesting.  One idea was to name each baby: Mortimer, Mary Jane, Evelyn Wood, Mother Theresa, Spartacus, Jumbo, Cherie, Wanda, Clementine, and so on.  William began to believe that he was boring James with his baby names, so he stopped.  Then, he suggested to his co-worker, “We could put little notes in the bottles to the expectant parents like: ‘your baby was bottled with care by William Buckley’ or ‘have a great time raising this kid!’

James responded, “Yeah or ‘Good luck! You’ll need it!’ or ‘Remember to feed twice daily.’”

“Yeah,” said William smiling.

After some time passed, James said, “One hour lunch time!”  They both took out their lunches and began eating.  William looked amazed at the clock, still unable to read the hour and surprised that James could somehow know what time it was.

Whereas they spoke frequently during the morning hours, the afternoon was the opposite. The two were speaking less and less as the day began wearing thin with the repetition of the work and soon they were not saying anything to one another, but keeping their heads down and focused on the baby bottling. William began to feel anxious for the end of the workday.

It started to feel late.  “James, what time are we supposed to get out of here?”  James did not seem to hear him over the crying of the babies.  “Oh well,” thought William who returned to his work.  William was now officially bored, but kept his work pace up.

“Hey, James, do you know what time it is?” there was still no response as James gazed down at the bottled babies he packaged.  William tried again, fearing that he was working longer than he needed to. “James, what time is it, do you know?”  There was still no response.

William was not sure what to do.  He continued his work, wanting to hold on to his job, but felt increasingly uneasy.  He watched James absently focused on his task.  Every once in awhile, James would look up, but only to push the palette of boxes into the freight elevator where they would be moved to the shipping dock and shipped to the expectant parents.  As James returned from one of these trips, William asked, “Do you want to switch with me, James? I could package the bottles and you could bottle the babies?” James did not respond.  After what felt like about a half hour’s worth of work, James was entirely sure that his workday was up and that he could return to his home willingly.  “Okay, well I’m off.  I’ll see you tomorrow.”  James made a slight grunt as William made his way towards the door.  The doorknob, however, seemed to be jammed.  “James, is there some sort of trick to this door? I can’t open it.”  Again, no motion was made on James’s part.  William shook the handle and couldn’t open it.  The noise of the babies started to frustrate him a bit with the worsening of his mood.  “C’mon James, help me open this thing.  I don’t want to be here all day.”  James did not react, but continued his work.

This entrapment went on.  William searched the warehouse for other exits and found none.  William could not open the door to the freight elevator and when James pushed the packages in, there was no room between the palette of boxes and the cramped elevator for William to jump in.  James remained trancelike despite William’s efforts to shake him out of it.  Finally, exasperated, William lay down on the floor and slept, tuning out the dull cries of the infants being packaged.

He dreamt of his favorite TV show about the futuristic robots who ran a blackjack casino in an outer space alien reservation, the slick dealer who slept with every fembot in the joint and his weasly sidekick who was always trying to “score big”.  Of course, there were the human patrons who had no idea how to really bet and were always having some sort of drama.

Then, William woke up and found himself staring at the ceiling fan above him and hearing the infants again.  He stood and saw the scene as it was before he took that brief nap: bleak, stuffy, and with no means of escape.  Naturally, he tried the door again.  For lack of another option, William continued his work bottling babies.

This time around the babies looked less human.  They were disturbed and evil and their cries represented some cheap desire.  William was unhappy with them.  Every one was malformed in some way, birthed improperly, and so he began filling boxes with unfit babies.  James, however, continued to find bottled babies to package and put into boxes onto slats of wood to be shipped.

William looked at his only coworker with disgust.  He hated him and this place.  Then, he thought of an idea.  William went over to the discard pile, newborns whining and groping, and retrieved the ugliest that he could find.  These he would place into the bottles with terrible notes:  “God bless this mess”, “As promised: your free dog”, “Nothing but the best for our number one client”, and so on.

This, he hoped, would surely get him fired so that he could return to his home.  He sat back and thought he might try and while away the time it took for corporate to discover his malfeasance and let him go.  After sitting for a moment, he decided that this was not ample action.  “What if they never fire me?” he wondered.  “There may be no escape.”  And so he bottled a few more babies with notes that read, “My name is William Buckley and I am being held captive at the Babbling Baby Baby Bottlling Company!  Send help immediately!” He bottled a countless number of these, lay on the floor, and waited.

James finally finished one cycle and began pushing the palette of boxes, including some deformed babies, mean notes, and cries for help, to the shipping elevator. The packages went up to the shipping yard and William waited longer.

Time passed.  Days, weeks, or possibly months.  Desperately, William sat at a desk, twiddling his fingers and remembering his freedom.  He stared sometimes and slept other times.  He never felt hunger or urges to use the bathroom, but only boredom and every negative feeling that goes with it, which he concentrated on in deep mediation.  Finally, while silently flexing his rage, William was startled by a loud buzzing noise.  William turned towards the sound and saw a red light flashing, one he had never noticed before.  Below the light was nothing but wall.  After the buzzing continued for a moment, a door materialized below the light and footsteps could be heard.  They moved quickly, with urgency.  William ran to the door hopefully, crying in joyful expectance.  The door opened and William could only see darkness, which frightened him.

Suddenly, out of the black, a large cardboard box was pushed into the room.  As William tried to bolt into the dark hallway, despite the possible consequences, the door closed, dematerialized, and the wall became just a wall again.  James walked over and pushed the box to a part of the room that was currently unused.  He opened it with a box cutter and removed a bottled baby.

“Company’s going to take a big hit on this,” James said.

William ran over to the box and examined bottle after bottle of hate notes, deformed babies, calls for help, and the complaint cards of customers explicitly detailing in harshly worded language what was wrong with their orders.  Attached to the side of the box, William noticed a note, which he tore off and read,

Attn: All Warehouse Employees

We have received numerous complaints about the quality of merchandise being shipped from the warehouse.  Previously, we have encouraged the products to be given a three-second glance for flaws.  This policy has no been changed.  When spot-checking products, please spend 5 seconds to ensure that the quality of shipments meets company standards.

Thank You,

Timothy, Warehouse Manager

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