Chapter Twenty Eight




He'd only read a little more of the report when he laid the tablet down and grabbed the fone and called his secretary. “Book a first class flight to Mars as soon as you can get me there,” he said. “And I don't mean the next one to take off, I mean the one that will get me there at the earliest time on the earliest date. Tell orbital I want Earth-normal gravity the entire trip.”
He composed a letter to his daughter. “Dear Destiny,” it said, “I wish you'd stay in touch. I'm in the middle of reading your fiancée's report and I see you're getting married. Please wait until I get there, I want to give my daughter away :)
“Love, Dad”
After he sent the electronic letter, a message from the company president came in.
“Dewey, I just now fired that idiot Richardson over email. That moron must have had a devout Jewish Rabbi to program the robots to cook pork, because I just had barbecued pork steaks on this ship and they were even worse than the coffee.
“The ship's captain is excellent, from what I can tell as a random traveler. You know I went under an assumed name. Well, no sooner had the robot brought me coffee and I'd taken a sip of the nasty brew when the captain himself brought a pot of very good coffee in and apologized for the robot coffee. He said he made coffee for all his passengers, even when he was flying cargo class passengers, even Martian prisoners being transported to Earth. At least some of our people are doing a good job, even above and beyond. Captain Muñoz said that all the first class captains were doing it, and even most cargo captains, and that there was even one guy named ‘Tex’ running one of our ships that made barbecued pork for his passengers. Steaks, ribs, chops, Muñoz said that Texas is famous for barbecue. I understand that the Australians are pretty crazy about barbecue, too. Muñoz said than none of the robot barbecue was any good.
“Anyway, I wish you'd talk to Engineering and promote someone as chief. See you when I get back to Earth.”
The CEO sent a memo to all engineering staff.

TO: Engineering Staff
FROM: Dewey Green, CEO
SUBJECT: New Chief

Staff, your chief has tendered his resignation effective immediately and I am looking for his replacement. I want my engineers to be productive, and you're more productive when you enjoy your assignments. I want my engineers to be happy, to enjoy your jobs.
With that in mind, please reply with answers to the following questions, and let none of the answers be your own name.
1. Who do you consider to be our best engineer, and why?
2. Who would you most want to be chief engineer, and why?
3. Who would you consider to be our worst engineer, and why?
4, Who would you want least to be our chief engineer, and why?
5. Which of our engineers has the best people skills?
I expect a reply in one hour and will expect all of you to be in conference room three in two hours.

He poured a cup of coffee and started to call Human Resources, but then thought better of it. He would call them after he chose a new chief, so he would know which engineering specialty they would be hiring.
He picked up the tablet and started reading again.


Chapter 27
Chapter 29

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