The Inconvenience

“Enter,” a cold, powerful voice boomed through the rich, mahogany doors.

Jenkins burst into the conference room with as much bravado as he could muster with a receding hairline and hemorrhoid cream musk. A figure stood across the room looking out at the skyline through the floor-to-ceiling windows.

A harried secretary panted into the room. “Mr. Buffman, I’m so sorry. I told Mr. Jenkins here that you were…” The shadowed man rose his hand and she quieted.

“No trouble, Alexis. This isn’t too much of an… inconvenience. You can get back to browsing r/birdswitharms.”

Jenkins was fuming. “Oh, this isn’t too inconvenient for you, is it? I don’t give a flying spacedick about whether this is convenient for you or not. We have two weeks, two bloody weeks, until MENO… and we have got nothing to show for it!”

Mr. Buffman chuckled to himself. “You paused for a moment after saying the conference name. MENO… pause…”

Jenkins sighed. “Yes, your humor is as evilly horrible and unfunny as r/funny, but it can not be entered into the Most Evil Nefarious Organization’s yearly conference!”

“Indeed,” the super villain CEO mused, turning to face his belligerent, balding companion. Buffman’s neckbeard twinkled in the afternoon gloom coming through the windows. He smoothed his ponytail back with lightly Cheeto-dusted fingers and leaned forward on his personal Segway towards Jenkins. “But we will not be leaving in the corporate submarine with nothing.”

“I don’t see how that is possible,” Jenkins said coolly. “Research spent the entire quarter doing analysis on optimizing how to better reduce corporate productivity. And Development blew their budget on robotically tightened pickle jars without realizing millennials are killing the pickle industry.

“We should look into increasing communication between those departments.” The pensive CEO dismounted from his monogrammed ride and started pacing. “Listen… I haven’t been completely honest with the board. I have a plan. But you must promise not to tell a single soul or comment bot… and no bamboozles.”

Jenkins looked as if his mother’s funeral came early. “Yes! We’re saved! I knew you must have something boss, no one’s ever been as evil as you since… well… Mike Myers in short intervals between 1997 and 2002. What is it, Mr. Buffman, you’ve gotta tell me!”

The CEO smiled. “You may find this hard to believe, but I promise every word of it is true. While I was fact-checking a particularly feisty brony on r/eltonjohn, I fell into a vat of toxic waste and developed mutant superpowers.”

Jenkins took a sip of water just in time to spit it out. “r/eltonjohn!? Bullshit, I always pegged you as a r/davidbowie guy for your flamboyant pop-rock star subreddit fix.”

Buffman continued, “I soon realized my newfound abilities and just how powerful they were.” He raised his hands and looked at them in awe. “And I used to think true power was getting Reddit gold for the first time…”

Jenkins’ jaw dropped. “W-what is this?”

Buffman looked him straight in his watery eyes. “This is exactly how we will sweep MENO and take home the Golden Six-Pack Rings, the most prestigious symbol of evil. Let me ask you something Jenkins… have you ever tried plugging in a typical USB-A cable?”

Jenkins gasped. “It’s impossible to do so correctly the first time! It always takes no less than three attempts. Scientists said it was a combination of quantum physics and Murphy’s Law… but it was you all along!?” Buffman nodded with a glint in his eye.

Jenkins’ mind was racing. “Yes, yes, that is truly evil, but now laptops and phones have the new reversible USB-C port. You can plug it in either way and it works. And many tech enthusiasts are saying this will be the one port for everything… it seems your power will be useless, sir.”

Mr. Buffman’s smile grew wider. “And I thought the same, my expository friend. But mutations allow us to adapt, to change for the better. So now I ask you this second also rhetorical question… when people try to use their new-fangled devices with the rest of the world’s own, how ever will they connect their computers and tablets and USB-powered popcorn launchers?

Dawning realization crept across Jenkin’s face. A cold sweat covered his body from his Dr. Scholl’s orthopedic inserts to underneath his custom business hairpiece.

“Dongles, Jenkins. Dongles large and dongles small. They will use my dongle simply because they must. An extra purchase to maintain the same functionality. Forged by Lucifer himself in the fires of Hell. Like your itchy toupee, Jenkins, it is truly the most evil and minor of inconveniences… yet.”

Matt Barker ’19

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