The Incident of the Office Tie Laminator

As far as Monday mornings go, today is off to a relatively calm start. My desk was clutter-free when I came into the office. I was able to finish my morning cup of coffee before it got cold. And I even made it all the way through my inbox before 10am.

You’d think by now I would know better than to let the idea of a peaceful Monday morning cross my mind. It just doesn’t happen.

As if on cue, Aditi comes rushing through my doorway. “Grab your phone and follow me right now!” She orders, a teasing smile spreading across her lips.

 Here we go.

Smartphone in hand, I follow her into the hallway. We head straight for the copy room. This can’t be good.

We turn the corner only to see Andy hovering over a machine, looking extremely uncomfortable. Brigid is crouched to the left of him, desperately trying to let him free.

“Andy, are you okay?” I stifle a laugh.

Aditi reaches out her hand for my phone and quickly captures the moment.


“Urghh… I’m fine.” Andy says with a grimace.

“Am I the only one having flashbacks here?” I say, poking Andy in the ribs. It doesn’t feel like that long ago that we were rescuing him from the shredder. Now, here he is, laminating his tie.

“I’ve told him he should really take advantage of our casual dress code,” Brigid mumbles. “It seems that you’re just not a ‘tie guy,’ Andy.”

“Looks like it’s time for a new laminating machine. Andy, you’re really costing us a pretty penny around here,” I add, teasing him again.

“In Andy’s defense, I’ve come pretty close to laminating a few limbs of my own,” Brigid chimes in. “This machine is circa 1980.”

“Brigid’s right… I’ve avoided that machine for years,” Aditi says. “Let’s check out this month’s Office Plus Flyer for a replacement.”

“Been there, done that!” Andy calls out. “Page five, Fellowes Jupiter Laminating Machine. Comes with four heat settings, auto shut off and 19 inches per minute laminating speed. I’ve had my eye on it for weeks.”

We all laugh. Leave it to Andy. “Sounds hard to resist,” I say. “Let’s place an order.”

“But Andy? Try not to eye the new one too closely,” Brigid jokes. “You don’t exactly hold the best track record when it comes to these machines.”

Andy smiles and nods. “You got it.”

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