The Q1 Brain Meeting

Me: Hey, everyone, thanks for coming. This meeting is just to check in, get updated about what everybody’s been working on in the first quarter, and see how we’re feeling about the rest of the day. Coffee, wanna kick us off?

Coffee: Sure, thanks. So, my team’s been pretty active in Q1. We started out with our regular one cup, and, you know, we weren’t seeing immediate results. We’re attributing that to a number of factors. Our target is developing a tolerance owing to her dead end job, plus we all know there’ve been some hiccups in the new sleep schedule—

(Sleep snorts. Coffee pauses.)

Coffee: —but we’re hoping to hit the ground running in Q2 with the second-cup initiative, and build on the foundation that Antidepressants set up.

Antidepressants: Yeah, thanks, Coffee. Can I get that PowerPoint I e-mailed everyone up on the screen, please? Great. Now, as you can see, our department’s not getting the full R.O.I. we once were. Forty milligrams used to be enough to get her out of bed, but increasingly—especially with the overwhelming trend toward mobile—she’s just checking her Vinted updates on her phone and then going back to sleep.

Sleep: Can I jump in here?

Me: Sure, Sleep, let’s hear from you.

Sleep: Listen, I know my department has been asking for a lot recently. But what do you want me to say? It was spring. That’s a new climate for all of us. We’ve had to adapt. Her sleeping patterns are being completely recalibrated by Daylight Saving Time. Seven hours a night isn’t gonna fly. We need nine, ten, even eleven hours now.

Coffee (under its breath): Ridiculous.

Sleep: And I hate to say it, but, as we enter Q2, the fact is we need a nap.

(Assorted grumbles and groans can be heard around the room.)

Sugar: We don’t need a nap, O.K.? What we need is a cookie.

Protein: Absolutely not. A cookie is a Band-Aid solution! We need scrambled eggs.

Me: Guys, come on. I can’t get into this with you two again before lunch. Let’s circle back to Coffee’s second-cup initiative. Water, how does that look from your end?

Water: I’m gonna have to strongly advise against it. If the first cup didn’t work, why would we double down on that strategy and sink more resources into a second cup. Besides, my team’s projections show that more coffee would frankly be counter to our goals at this point.

Coffee: Excuse me?

Water: She’s tired because she’s dehydrated. It’s always dehydration! How many studies do we have to present before this sinks in?

Coffee (sulkily): There’s water in coffee, you know.

Exercise: I’m with Water. The work my guys are doing is pointless without support in the form of more water! All through Q1, we were busting our ass and we could not get any of the benefits. That’s textbook dehydration. I’m sorry, but it is.

Sugar: Could be low blood sugar.

Exercise: It’s not.

Sugar: It could be, though.

Water: It’s not.

Me: All right, let’s cool it with the crosstalk, please. I want to go big picture. None of us can deny the negative trends we’ve been seeing in mood and productivity. Let’s do a deep dive. Therapy, what do you have to say?

Therapy: I know things look stagnant right now, but it’s a process. We’re pursuing a long-term strategy, and sometimes things have to get worse before they get better. If we just stay the course—

Antidepressants: Oh, stuff it.

Therapy: Hey!

Antidepressants: I’m sick of this asshole taking credit for the work I’m doing! Therapy, have you ever gotten concrete results?

Therapy: I’m dealing with challenges that the rest of you have never had to handle! An off-site partner is not easy to work with, you know. Her Subconscious couldn’t even be bothered to dial in to this meeting.

Me: We tried. The connection was bad.

Therapy: What else is new?

Me: Look, excuses and finger-pointing aren’t going to solve anything. Does anyone have any constructive ideas?

(A calm, wise voice speaks up from the back of the room.)

Meditation: Pardon me, but may I make a suggestion? If you’d consider bringing me on full time instead of employing me on a sporadic freelance basis, I really think I could help out with some of these issues.

Me: Yeah, yeah. Maybe next quarter.

(Alcohol clears its throat.)

Alcohol: I know you already know that we’re all dying to contribute more consistently over in my department.

Me: Thanks. I appreciate that.

Water: Tell me you’re not considering putting that jackass in charge.

Me: Not in charge. Just . . . maybe he should have a place at the table. Would that be so terrible?

(Suddenly, the door to the conference room bursts open.)

Menopause: Sorry, sorry, sorry! Am I late?

Me: Fuck it. Sleep, you’re in charge.

stencilart #sprayart #urbanart #oneliner #oneliners #picturepoetry #wordsmith #caztoon #monoverse #sarcazm

(Inspired by my PMP imsomnia-narcolepsy and Hallie Cantor)

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