Monday, July 10, 2006

The Tension Envelope, Please...

Before opening the envelope to reveal the E Pluribus Unum Humor Contest results, and before the cliched drum roll that precedes such dramatic announcements, let us pause to consider Tension Envelopes. Yes, friends, Tension Envelopes. As Brian, Steve, Lisa, and I whisked down Interstate 80 en route to Shea Stadium on Saturday (a great time, not just at the game but also a great search for pizza on the same-day return trip, culminating in a 90-minute stop in Parsippany at Harry's on Route 46, thanks to Henny Youngman and Nadia's benevolence, but that is another, longer Kerouacesque story), I could not resist launching into a monologue (c'mon bloggers, you can identify with that; we're all about monologues) on the most exquisitely engaging highway sign anywhere (though it is very much somewhere, near Hackensack-ack-ack-ack, New Jersey). It's on your left as you are heading in toward the George Washington Bridge. I'll assume the totemic and iconic Tension Envelopes sign atop the building is for a working manufacturing facility, because surely there is no lack of tension envelopes in this world, as well as a concomitant and endless need to replace, rejuvenate, and celebrate the same. Somewhere (I bent the upper corner of a page; I just don't know which of the myriad dog-eared pages it is) Marcel Proust calls the human body a "nervous envelope." Surely, we can take some translation liberties and declare that the Tension Envelopes sign along Route 80 is a mindfulness reminder that we live in this envelope that begs for relief, some inner peace, some release (through mindfulness or climax or focus or coda or...). Some Age Quod Agis, as I have rambled on about in an earlier post. (Yeah, we all have discernible themes in our posts; we cannot hide 'em.) Of course, not only is the human body a tension envelope (if the company is still a working facility, you can see that I have differentiated myself from your product(s) by embracing lowercase letters), but so also are other entities. The workplace can sometimes be its own tension envelope, n'est-ce pas? A week or two ago, when I felt some of that tension in the envelope of our small business, I sent an email to S., to share that observation. S. sits several feet to my left. Only trouble is that S. innocently blurted out the contents of my email so that all of us experiencing the enveloped tension got to hear what I thought was a private bon mot exchanged between S. and me. My private aside had turned into a public (perhaps tension-increasing) declaration. No harm done, though. Could've been worse.

I invite you to share other manifestations of this tension-envelope metaphor (marriage? adolescence? the nanoseconds before the apex of pleasure? a car on a long trip? this feckin post?).


The envelope, please. The contest results.

Second Prize (anything $15 or less in The Laughorist Store) goes to:

JBWritergirl, for:

"God Bless the Thong."

First Prize (any one item from The Laughorist Store) goes to:

The Meloncutter, for:

"You-um takeabus, pleasE" (with the advent of greenhouse gases from auto emissions and the high price of fuel...)

Okay, okay. Shush. Stop your feckin whining already before it begins, willya? Are these the funniest slogans you ever heard? No. Are they the paradigm of witticism and cleverness? They are not. But, hey, you shoulda seen the stuff the judges (well, one judge) did NOT find funny, clever, or even faintly amusing.

We'll have to aim lower with our topic next time.

Which reminds me of a quote by H.L. Mencken, but buy your own Quote Verifier, hear me?

1 comment:

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