Sunday had come and gone. Today was the day of fate. Today was Monday.
The man walked to work in the morning darkness. The man walked alone. He thought about what his coworker had said, what the street woman had said, and what his wife had said.
He passed a homeless man on the street. He knew that a sane man would not throw away everything he had in this job. Really, stabbing kittens as they came down the conveyor belt was an opportunity. Many had no jobs at all.
But he could not shake the feeling that stabbing kittens was wrong. It was his conscience that he could not escape. And so he resolved that he would ask the owner to explain what the purpose of their work was.
When he arrived, he informed the foreman that he wished to speak to the owner. Both the foreman and his coworker tried to dissuade him from meeting. But they were of no help. He would meet with him, and they would talk.
The owner’s office was above the factory, perched over the conveyor belts with a view like God’s.
“What does it take to run a factory?” asked the owner.
“Money?” replied the man. “Power? A seemingly endless supply of kittens?”
“Vision,” stated the owner clearly. “Vision. I have a vision for what I want to do here at Katkill, and I pay you to enact my vision.”
“But why this?” asked the man.
“Money is speech,” said the owner. “Knowledge is power. Money is power in paper form. Speech is thus a paper form of knowledge.”
“I don’t follow.”
“Oh, but you do,” said the owner. “You do because I own the factory. Were you to own your own factory, you could do as you pleased.”
Anger and reason fought in the man’s mind, pounded dents into his forehead. At one turn, anger had reason against the ropes; at the next, reason had anger in a chokehold. Then, in a resolute moment of action, reason and anger joined hands and clotheslined hesitation.
The man stood up to the owner and said, “I QUIT!”
PAUL LAFARGUE enjoys lazy Sundays sleeping in and snuggling with his own kitten, Laura. He currently resides in Paris, France, where he currently focuses on his writing.