When it comes to humor, there is a fine line between funny and tasteless. There’s also a fine line between being topical and yesterday’s news. The lines intersect at different points, creating enough angles to exhaust a protractor.
That said, I present this story from Sunday’s Washington Post about a lawsuit in Utah. It begins:
No one really disputes that Chad Hudgens was waterboarded outside a Provo office park last May 29, right before lunch, by his boss.
That’s right – as part of a teambuilding exercise, Hudgens was held down by co-workers while supervisor Joshua Christopherson “poured water from a gallon jug over [Hudgens’] nose and mouth,” according to the story.
“You saw how hard Chad fought for air right there,” Christopherson reportedly told his sales reps. “I want you to go back inside and fight that hard to make sales.”
Christopherson’s actions netted him a two-week suspension, WaPo said.
Hudgens said he’d volunteered because “the last time we did a team-building exercise outside, we did an egg toss,” according to the story.
Putting aside the obvious questions (What would happen if you forgot Christopherson’s birthday? What if you took the last Sharpie out of the supply closet?), I leave you with quotes from the firm’s general counsel and its president:
- “I don’t know if this would even be an issue if it weren’t for Guantanamo Bay.”
- “How many times did the CIA even do waterboarding? Three times?”
- “But look at the damage it did to America’s reputation. And it’s going to hurt our image.”
I still can’t decide if those sound bites create obtuse or acute angles according to my humor geometry, but I’m pretty sure they aren’t right.
Danny Jacobs, Legal Affairs Writer