54 thoughts on “December 25, 2015

  1. Yeah, reminds me of an old co-worker of mine who had a customer call her at home on Thanksgiving Day one year. Wanted her to get some work done for him for that weekend. Never mind she had no access to work computers, deadline for the weekend was past, and did I mention it was Thanksgiving Day?! Inconsiderate ass. Just like Stuart.

  2. I realize there can never be a satisfactory resolution to Stuart’s ignorance, insensitivity, and bullying, because this strip is an accurate representation of real life, and that’s the way far too many managers are. Happy Christmas, Marla – may you find joy wherever you can outside of Grumbels.

    • I’ve said before, the only (possibly) satisfactory resolution is to have Stuart written out. Whatever way Norm chooses to do that, it just has to be done. Moments like this set it in concrete.

      • I think he has to remain in the strip for exactly those reasons. He’s such a wonderful source of friction that the strip would be diminished without him. What other character is so disliked, and for such good reason? He’s like the fairy princess put under a spell such that every time he opens his mouth to speak, a live toad hops out (h/t: Robertson Davies). He even has a human side, though it remains hidden most of the time.

        In real life, that’s a different matter. My job is so much easier and more enjoyable now that a couple of people are gone.

        Merry Christmas, everybody! (Even if you don’t celebrate it, may your day be a happy one. And if you wish me a joyous Diwali, Eid, Yom Kippur, or anything else, I’ll smile and wish you the same. So there!)

        • …and *my* life has become so much easier after getting away from some serious a……les at work.
          But I agree, Stuart has to stay in the strip to portray real life corporate meanness.

  3. Why wasn’t this discussed out days ago? Stuart must not have been working hard enough. My store manager posted a paper detailing our “strategy” for returns last week.

    • Much like the “visits” at my job that are only mentioned the day of the said visit. What, no warning beforehand? I can understand “Surprise” visits…..

    • You’re bringing up the concept that Stuart might have worked hard at some point.

      If so, welcome, brand new reader! I’ll give you Internet points to find a strip where Stuart is working hard without being forced to.

  4. Marla will have to answer to Stuart for Scott’s compassion. They both know the rules, after all.

    (This is what I saw in yesterday’s Toronto Star, seeing as they’re not publishing the hardcopy edition today.)

  5. Incredible! He wants to disturb what will likely be Marla’s last work-free Christmas to discuss business? Is he OUT OF HIS MIND? Never mind don’t answer that. Of course he is.

    • Why should it surprise anyone? I’ll be Stuart has nothing else to do on Christmas. He’s old enough that I bet his parents are both gone. We know his sister is out of town. I suspect he has no family to be with. With everything shut down, what is he going to do?

      • Which is kind of sad, the store staff are the most family like group he is normally around. A very dysfunctional one but a family none the less, and he is trying be with them in the only way he knows how to. ….I kind of want to give him a hug now…

        • Don’t say that. Did he hug Cooper when he collapsed on the job from appendicitis? No. Did he hug Cooper when he handed him his pink slip? No. He does everything in the most callous way possible, he does not deserve human contact or companionship. I wonder if my old district manager reads this comic, he’s almost a mirror image of Stuart.

      • if I found out that my DM had NO ONE to be with at Christmas, I’d invite him to my family dinner. It’s short, my family is loud and talks a lot (so he wouldn’t have much time to say anything, let alone about me), and we make a LOT of food.
        So, he’d have fun. He’d (maybe) see how human I am. And he’d be accepted. My family is kind and will bring in anyone from the outside and treat them like family. Until they prove they are a dick. and even then, they’ll give at least one more chance.

        But I still, after nearly 8 years, have no clue where my DM is stationed, or if he ever has holiday plans. I’m assuming so, since he has never called me or either of my immediate bosses on Christmas. I know because they would gripe about said DM calling them off the clock. As you should.

  6. Remember Stuart is really modern day Scrooge. No doubt Stuart was probably grew up poor, from broken home, and bullied etc so he never learned social skills. Thus unmarried (no woman could stand him.) So he is left with Grumbels as “his family” and no doubt treats family the way he was treated by his family.
    End of psychoanalysis 101.
    Happy holidays.!!

    • Though Scrooge (or Neezy, as I like to call him) was a miser, and I don’t see that trait in Stuart. He’s just given all his energy to Grumbels–not the people who work there, but the Corporate Overlords, whom he serves with unquestioning obedience. Neezy was hateful and mean-spirited, too, whereas Stuart is simply clueless to the idea that there’s something outside work life and the goal of higher sales.
      End of psychoanalysis 101A.

      And I hope you’re getting something resembling a white Christmas in Iowa. Here in MD/DC, we’re getting rain. And more rain. And still more; there’s a flash flood watch in effect. I suppose it’s a white Christmas if you count fog.

    • Scrooge had a heart, it was just buried under the pain from the horrible things that happened (losing his sister, his fiancee leaving him) to him. He sees the light at the end.

      Stuart is hopeless.

  7. Amazing, Norm has Stuart actually acknowledging Scott’s existence. I would have expected Stuart to say “gimme Marla, now”. Stuart at least has a minimal social skills. But probably better skills for brown nosing the uppity ups.

  8. Stuart is thoroughly dedicated to his job, which would ordinarily garner respect, but then you realize that the man has absolutely nobody that cares about him so he spends Christmas with his job. “Merry Christmas, job!” just doesn’t have a ring to it. What a grinch!

    Merry Christmas, everyone!

    • But he’s not really though. Throughout the strip’s history, he has almost never done his own work. He constantly dumped every task on Marla and called it ‘delegating.’ He took all the credit for the store’s successes and made her take the blame for its failures. He recommended Marla as his replacement mainly to further and secure his own career. These traits continue since he’s been promoted on a different level. He’s a childish, pompous, lazy ignoramous who needs to spend next Christmas in (subterranean) hell.

      • You’re right – I said that wrong, whoops! He’s dedicated to his job, he just has a warped definition of what his job is. My bad for not being clear.

  9. This is EXACTLY what my mother or boyfriend (whoever was closer to my cell phone) would have done if my boss called about ANYTHING on Christmas day. The mall was closed. If there was a security issue, the store manager or assistant manager are up to solve it before me, etc, etc.

    But…. if they didn’t see my phone go off or wouldn’t see me leave to take care of business…. I’d leave the house and go take care of whatever. Because I am a suckup…

  10. I once came across an anecdote about a guy whose boss regularly called him at home–evenings, weekends, late at night, didn’t matter–to discuss work things with him at length while he was off the clock. Finally, one time he called his boss at 2:00 A.M., waking him up, to do the same. The boss got the message and never disturbed him while he was at home again.

    That story may or may not be true, but it *should* be!

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