This was sent today to all Department of Labor employees:
From: Secretary Elaine ChaoWell, how could one not respond to that?
Sent: Wednesday, November 22, 2006 11:57 AM
Subject: Thanksgiving Message from the Secretary
Happy Thanksgiving to you and your loved ones! I hope you’ll have a relaxing and fun holiday weekend with family, friends and loved ones. Last weekend, I was in my neighborhood grocery and learned that the couple who ran it for decades are facing health challenges. I thought of them as I composed this email and am reminded how grateful we are to have the friends, colleagues, and family who enrich our daily lives. I hope we’ll also remember our men and women in uniform this Thanksgiving. And once again, thank you for your service to our country.
From: Jordan Barab
Sent: Wednesday, November 22, 2006 11:57 PM
Subject: Thanksgiving Message from Confined Space
Happy Thanksgiving to you too and thanks for your note! But I'm afraid I can't figure out what the hell you're talking about!
You say that "Last weekend, I was in my neighborhood grocery and learned that the couple who ran it for decades are facing health challenges."
What the hell does this mean? What's a health "challenge"? Is their health "challenged" or is their ability to pay for their health care challenged?
I'm glad you have friends, colleagues, and family "who enrich our daily lives." Friends, family and colleagues are certainly good things, but when it comes to enriching, I have a feeling a universal single-payer health plan would be far more useful for your grocery couple.
And what's the point of bringing them up in the first place? Are you saying that you're sure glad you're not in their shoes? "Gosh, I sure am glad that Mitch and I aren't health-challenged [as opposed to morally challenged -- see below?]"
And when you say that "we" are grateful to have friends, colleagues, etc., are you implying that your grocery couple doesn't have friends -- unlike you and Senator Mitch, who have lots of friends (particularly Senator Mitch, although he has about 6 fewer friends/colleagues than he had before November 7).
Finally, yes, Elaine, I certainly do remember our men and women in uniform. I mean, how can I forget? I particularly remember the thousands buried in their uniforms, and the tens of thousands permanently disabled -- physically and mentally -- and their families who aren't exactly having a Happy Thanksgiving! And for what?Most of all, I remember that they were sent there for absolutely no reason, thanks to your boss and your husband. In fact, Elaine, in addition to remembering them and thanking them, you should be falling down on your knees and apologizing to them.
(Oh, and by the way, my holiday "weekend" would be more fun and relaxing if I didn't have to work on Friday.)
Happy Thanksgiving To You And Senator Mitch Too!