Larry Jeremiah, seated in the eighth-floor breakroom, inhaled the aroma of hot peppermint tea and told himself that, this year, he’d get through the office Christmas party without losing his temper. He’d tried relinquishing Secret Santa organizational responsibilities after the “Practical Gifts Only” fiasco of 2012 but no one volunteered. Ever. They’d rather humiliate him. All he’d tried to do was point out that five minutes of laughter wasn’t worth the five-hundred years it took a Cat Butt Tissue Dispenser to decompose in a landfill – and the challenge was on.
Dave Gregory is a Canadian writer, a retired sailor, and an associate editor with the Los Angeles-based Exposition Review. His work has most recently appeared in Ellipsis Zine, Write City Magazine, & Literally Stories. Please follow him on Twitter @CourtlandAvenue and visit his website at courtlandavenue.wordpress.com