The Unlikely Movie That Inspired This Blog

My first full-time job involved sitting at a desk for at least 12 hours a day in an office in midtown Manhattan.  I did this for five years.  During that time, I read a lot of Last Day at the Office emails --farewell messages written by colleagues who had decided to do something else with their lives.  They were usually sent at 5 PM on Fridays, when your entire body is itching to just go --to stand up and run out of your office building and into the natural light and city smog below.  But more often than not, the only practical significance of 5 PM was that you could change into jeans and a t-shirt under your desk and walk to the printer with your shoes off.

Stuck at work, those 5 PM departure emails always made me feel a mixture of envy, sadness, and wonder.  A bit romantic for corporate America, I know; I blame it on the beautiful rays of the setting sun streaming through my office windows at that hour.  Anyway, the feeling reminded me of a scene from Toy Story 1 that takes place in one of those arcade machines where you try to maneuver a claw to reach into a bin and pick up a toy prize.  In the movie, all the toy martians in the machine look up in awe as the claw, ensconced in blinding white light, descends and grabs one of them by the butt.  The chosen martian smiles beatifically as it ascends into the white light, and says to its brethren below, "I have been chosen!  Farewell my friends!  I go on to a better place."  All of the remaining martians smile and wave good-bye, moved by a mixture of envy, sadness, and wonder.

Here is the scene:

Perhaps the feelings evoked by Last Day Emails are a little bit less intense than how it feels to watch a giant claw take your lifelong friend away, but both scenarios are equally layered and bittersweet.  I like noticing feelings, especially layered and bittersweet ones, so I made a place where I can indulge in this horrible habit by collecting, posting, and analyzing farewell emails.  One day, I hope to come across a Last Day at the Office email that simply says:
I have been chosen!  Farewell my friends!  I go on to a better place.
But I guess, in a way, that's what they all already say.