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Forgive Me, Forgive Me Not: How Not To Atone

September 5, 2005

Dear Jerry,

Before the High Holy Days hit, I need to formally apologize. I am on my shul’s nursery school waiting list and if the rabbi saw how devoted I am he might put a good word in. No, I’m not even pregnant, but it’s never too early, you know?

Anyway, about that apology: During the seven years I’ve served as your administrative assistant, I fudged my time sheets, swiped someone’s soy yogurt from the communal fridge and helped myself to an electronic mini-labeler (which I never use). I shouldn’t have done any of the above, or called my boyfriend, Sam, in Nigeria from the office. If it makes you feel better, he did cheat on me.

I know how busy you are — you tell me so every time we speak — but could you forgive me?

My apologies,


P.S. For the record, I never stole petty cash (that I didn’t immediately return).

September 19, 2005

Dear Jerry,

Not to badger you — I know that you requested that assistants be seen and not heard — but I was a tad concerned when you referred to me as “Wendy the temp.”

Anyway, just wanted you to know that over the weekend, I finished researching your family’s genealogy, picked up your wife’s cuticle cream and dusted between your file folders. I know the highest form of giving is anonymous, but thought you ought to know how much of a martyr I am.

Honestly, I only took the labeler for my home files as I am writing an epic novel about being an exploited production assistant. If you would like to produce the film adaptation we could certainly talk about that.

Any news about the apology?


Justine (not Wendy)

P.S. I started underreporting my time on the time sheets in hopes of making up for the yogurt pilfering.

September 30, 2005


Please accept my deepest apologies for bothering you when your son’s bar mitzvah on the set of “The Sopranos” is coming up.

That said, Rosh Hashanah is fast approaching and I know you don’t consider yourself really Jewish, but would you find it in your heart to forgive me?

Please tell me how to proceed. I am utterly destroyed every time I think about it. I cannot breathe.

With compassion,


October 12, 2005

Mr. Jerry B. Hashum:

Your silence is so telling. It is clear you want nothing to do with me and are just too kind to fire me. I hope this won’t interfere with future opportunities to partner together on any film or book deals.

Please accept my resignation.

Many thanks,

Justine Splinter

P.S. Do you think you might be able to write me a letter of recommendation?




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