Interviewer: Good morning. Come right in.
Canary: Thank you.
Interviewer: So, you know we’re interviewing for a coal mining position.
Interviewer: And we really appreciate your enthusiasm.
Canary: I flew as fast as I could to be here ten minutes early.
Interviewer: That’s the spirit.
Canary: The prospect of having a job is something that will feed my soul.
Interviewer: That’s convenient, because here at Fledgling Enterprises, we’re very concerned about canaries’ souls.
Canary: That’s pretty awesome.
Interviewer: So, I’m going to ask you a series of questions, and if at any point they don’t seem to make sense, feel free to ask me for clarification.
Canary: You got it!
Interviewer: What do you think about coal mines?
Canary: To tell you the truth, I don’t know a whole lot about them. I heard that they’re underground or something. That kinda intrigued me. You know, because I’m a bird, and I don’t really do a lot of flying underground.
Interviewer: But what do you think of them?
Canary: They’re pretty cool I guess.
Interviewer: Actually, they’re a little on the warm side.
Canary: Ha! That’s some razor-sharp wit you have there.
Interviewer: You should see my stand-up routine.
Interviewer: No. I don’t have one.
Canary: Oh, but you said—
Interviewer: How good are you at breathing?
Canary: Pretty good I think. I’ve been doing it for a while, and I haven’t forgotten how.
Interviewer: It’s really important.
Canary: Yes. Breathing is important. I’m a big fan of breathing.
Interviewer: And you’d know if you weren’t breathing?
Canary: Probably. I mean sometimes I don’t breathe. Like when I’m holding my breath.
Interviewer: How long can you hold your breath?
Canary: I don’t know. A few minutes?
Interviewer: Can you be more specific?
Canary: Three minutes.
Interviewer: (Writes that down) Impressive.
Canary: I know. I’ve always been really good at holding my breath.
Interviewer: That subject comes up a lot, does it?
Canary: More than you’d think.
Interviewer: Tell me about it.
Canary: You know, sometimes we all get together and get a little sloshed on a spilled can of Coke, and then we see who can hold their breath the longest.
Interviewer: Interesting way to pass the time.
Canary: I know, right? This one time, my buddy Chirpy and me tried to see who could hold our breath the longest. I ended up winning.
Interviewer: How did Chirpy take the loss?
Canary: I don’t know. We did it on some telephone wires. He passed out and fell into a passing garbage truck. He never was that lucky.
Interviewer: Did he survive?
Canary: Not sure. A crow that saw it happened said something about pneumatic compression or something. I never saw him again if that’s what you mean.
Interviewer: Fair enough. So you won?
Canary: Yep! Pretty cool, huh?
Interviewer: Extraordinary. What do you think about humans?
Canary: They’re an odd species. They kind of look like monkeys with some kind of hair leprosy. And they can’t fly. They seem to be doing all right for themselves though. I know they like to kill each other a lot.
Interviewer: A minor issue.
Canary: I guess. I never want to kill other canaries. I mean you could argue that I killed Chirpy, but it was totally his fault. Maybe we should have tried holding our breath over a mattress.
Interviewer: Do you know what toxic fumes smell like?
Canary: Not really. I did smell a rotten eggplant once though.
Interviewer: Would you know carbon monoxide if you smelled it?
Canary: Probably. I’m pretty smart.
Interviewer: I tell you what, all you have to do is be able to tell the humans when you smell carbon monoxide. If you can do that, we’ll hire you right now.
Canary: Sweet! What does it smell like?
Interviewer: That’s the thing. It’s really subtle. You have to be really good at breathing to notice it. So when you’re down in the mine, you have to breathe, breathe, and breathe some more.
Canary: It’ll be tricky flying around in a mine.
Interviewer: That reminds me, what is your opinion on cages?
Canary: Cages? They’re kind of weird if you ask me.
Interviewer: What if I told you all you had to do was sit in a cage and breathe? If you did that, you’d get full pay with benefits?
Canary: I would? That sounds pretty sweet! I mean, I don’t like cages, but getting paid to sit in a cage is pretty sweet. I’ll have to tweet about that later. I have lots of followers who love me.
Door breaks open and a hysterical canary breaks in.
Canary 2: Don’t do it man! They’ll kill you. It’s all a trap! They keep giving you crackers man, and it’s all a lie!
Security comes in and removes Canary 2.
Canary: What was that about?
Interviewer: Just a psychological test. You passed.
Canary: That’s cool. So that was all part of the interview?
Gunshot is heard.
Canary: Wait, did they shoot him?
Interviewer: Nope. You’re hired.
Canary: Awesome! I’m going to go huff some carbon monoxide so I’ll know what it smells like.
Interviewer: Please don’t. At least not yet.
Photo by Robert Katzki on UnsplashFollow me in a completely non-creepy way:
I read it hours ago but couldn’t reply until now due to major laughter!
What can I say? Being a canary in a coal mine is a rough gig.