Behind the scenes (part 1) – now I know how Homer felt

Here at Microsoft, I am a Program Manager.  One of the projects that we are currently working on is slipping behind schedule (and it has barely even gotten started).  There are various components that have to be re-engineered and it's forcing us further and further behind.  This afternoon, we had a meeting to discuss it (Microsoft loves its meetings, it's part of our culture, a lot like how Tim Horton's is a part of Canadian heritage).

During the past year, there has been one department in our division that has caused me more frustration than every other department put together.  I won't go into details, but suffice to say I have found it aggravating in the past year or so that they always seem to blow my division off and put us near the bottom of the priority list for anything we deliver to them.

Keeping that in mind, I am reminded on the "Who shot Mr. Burns" episode on the Simpsons, which aired in 1995.  Homer was a prime suspect for shooting Mr. Burns because Mr. Burns could never remember his name.  In order to get in to the Mr. Burns recognition system, Homer sends Mr. Burns a case of chocolate with a picture of his family (and Homer, of course) at the bottom of the box of chocolates.  Mr. Burns and Smithers receive the box of chocolates and consume them, well, almost all of them.

The two gorge themselves and eat the entire box except for one that is covering Homer's face.  So, Mr. Burns doesn't realize it's really from Homer.  As the two eat the chocolate, they recognize the various family members.

"Oh, it's that Simpson mutt.  He was my guard dog for a while."

"Oh, that Simpson boy.  He spent some time as my heir for a while."

When the two are finished, they have recognized the entire family except for Homer.  Mr. Burns instructs Smithers to draft a thank-you letter to Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie for the chocolates, with which he complies.

(More in part 2).

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