This article is part of the Memos from Bear Cave series.

TO: All Employees of Bear Cave Soup Co.
DATE: December 20, 1979
SUBJECT: I Have a Son

For the first time in my life, somebody has given me good news. I have a son. No, not that piece of trash rockabilly idiot you're all familiar with, but a real, genuine man of a son I never knew about. Turns out one of the many "customers" I encountered during my days as a door-to-door salesman had the tenacity to make a child out of my seed.

Having just learned of his existence, I have sent for the boy to come forth and take his place as my rightful heir.

In celebration of my good news, you are hereby granted permission to insult, manhandle or outright maim my other son, the no-good rockabilly. I have previously reserved this privilege entirely for myself, but now I'm declaring open season. Have at him. First one to make him cry can go home early.

TO: All Employees of Bear Cave Soup Co.
DATE: December 20, 1979
SUBJECT: Congratulations to Tall Charlie

Tall Charlie is our winner today, having made my idiot rockabilly son cry by simply running him over in the parking lot as he attempted to enter the building. This is why Tall Charlie is my right hand and personal instrument of justice around here, and also why he cannot go home early. He's too important to the operation.

WHY ARE YOU STILL READING THIS? By my calculations, it should have taken no more than five seconds to read this memo and return to work. By my estimate you have wasted over 1 minute staring at it. Put down this paper and get to work or I will have Tall Charlie run you over, too.

TO: All Employees of Bear Cave Soup Co.
DATE: December 20, 1979
SUBJECT: Ignore the Screams

If I hear about anyone stopping work to investigate the screams coming from the parking lot, I will fire you. I pay you to make soup all day, not care for wounded animals in my parking lot. I will remind you that I had that parking lot repaved at great personal expense, and will not tolerate anybody walking or driving on it needlessly.

I want to hear the sounds of soup being made, not whimpering from cooing mothers and dopey pencil-necked do-gooders. I pride myself on running the toughest soup business in the country, and the record number of workplace suicides here reinforces my position as THE CRUELEST MAN IN SOUP.

TO: All Employees of Bear Cave Soup Co.
DATE: December 20, 1979
SUBJECT: Parking Lot Situation

Since so many of you were having trouble keeping your weakling consciences in check, I had Manuel Rodriguez drag my rockabilly son away from the office, so you shouldn't hear him screaming anymore. He's fine. His legs are just broken.

I don't need to remind you that 1980 is going to be a make-or-break year for soup. If we want to stay alive and beat Royal Mariner, Hardyman's Harvest, Canned Fury, United Broth Co. and all those other sons-of-bitches companies, we're going to have to fight dirty. I want our tomato soup to have more competitor blood than tomato in it.

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About this series

Memos sent from Bear Cave Soup's eccentric president to his poor, beleaguered employees.

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