The Office
E-mail Surveillance

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E-mail Surveillance

Michael welcomes us to a beautiful Friday morning in Scranton, Pennsylvania, but when he swivels in his office chair to glance out the window, he is greeted by a sight that strikes terror into his tiny little mind: the Dunder Mifflin traveling IT guy, getting out of his car and heading towards the building. But Michael doesn't know it's an IT guy yet; all he sees is the Sikh turban on the IT guy's head, which causes one of his thirty or so synapses to fire -- specifically, the one labeled TERRORIST. So he immediately goes into panic mode, shutting off the lights in the bullpen and hoping the IT guy goes away. Kevin offers to call the police, and Michael just tries to shush him with panicked gestures as the IT guy knocks on the door to the DM office. Later, Michael admits to us, "The IT tech guy and me? Did not get off to a great start." Oh, sorry, we weren't supposed to know that was the IT tech guy either. Pretend I'm not watching this on DVD.

So after the credits (which run at 4x speed at my house), Michael is hovering nervously over his office chair, which now contains the rather grumpy IT guy. He asks Michael for his password. Michael nods at the Post-It on the side of his monitor, which reads "1234." That's everything you can do wrong password-wise in, like, three seconds.

Michael still hasn't come down from his xeno-panic, because when he comes out of his office, he nearly wets himself when Dwight pops out at him from the door of the adjoining conference room. Dwight grills Michael about what's going on in there, and uses the excuse that if Michael dies, Dwight will need to know what's going on so that he can take over. Michael scoffs that he's in great shape, but Dwight starts rattling off any number of grisly fates that Michael could meet at any moment. Michael only has an answer to one of them: "If I step on a mine in Scranton, Pennsylvania, you can have my job." And on any other sitcom, he would have specific cause to regret that promise before the closing credits.

From his office, Michael THs that there some things a boss doesn't share with his employees: "His salary; that would depress them. His bed; it --" For once, Michael stops talking in time (no doubt thinking, as all of us are, about his own boss's bed) and skips right to number three: "I'm not going to tell them that I'll be reading their emails."

So then we see Michael making the poor IT guy search the email database for the phrases michael + boss + funny. He's all excited about an email that comes up from Stanley, until he reads that Stanley couldn't go to a game because Michael is "an ass," making him stay late that night. "Stanley's an ass," Michael grumbles. The IT guy gives the camera the smallest little smile, probably also enjoying the fact that the search engine couldn't even find a note with "funny" in it and thought this would be a good bone to toss instead. He sure got the hang of dealing with Michael in a hurry.

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The Office




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