When I penned my last column, I thought the combination of public shame and constructive criticism would help those around me to understand how they ruin each day. Instead of coming to a newly reformed workplace, however, the morning after its publication I was greeted by cold stares and informed that Steve and Rob, the subjects of my first column, were "insulted," or (my particular favorite) "hurt" by my arrow-straight, forthright ideas about how to improve my office morale. I was further assailed with endless reminders about how to be "proactive" and how to "focus on the positive." Well, fine. Apologies all around!

I hereby apologize for hurting the feelings of those around by speaking plainly about their infuriating habits. I am sorry that they were unable to handle bold and unadorned truth about their faults. And I am deeply sorrowful that so many felt the need to approach me afterwards with their twittering litany of complaints and scoldings.

It is a sad day indeed when the elite must temper their words so as not to mar the shiny-smooth façade of pleasantries that comfort and protect the dull-witted and lethargic from the cold harshness of the world at large. It is indeed a profound shame that solid truths must remain unvoiced in these quarters so that the lesser members of society might continue unimpeded by such unpleasantries as consequences. It is hereby my fondest wish that every day be filled with truffles and bonbons and kittens and infant dogs.

I will not be silenced! I will not stand idly by while my workplace is defiled by the low-born and shrill! From my desk near the front door I am captive witness to the growing pageant of dullards that our lax standards invite. While the colorful array of ne'er-do-well visitors may keep our calendar listings filled, what of the distractions to me? How am I to focus on vital design duties when the latest float in the imbecile parade passes through the front door?

There are grave problems ahead for the Mercury, mark my words. But take courage, my friends. Close your mouths, attend to my grievances, and we may yet prevail.