Charles entered the office carrying several shopping bags. Reaching in one of the bags, he pulled out an air horn and handed it to Robert, who awkwardly accepted it.
“Charles, what’s going on?” Robert asked.
“Today is Kevin’s birthday, and I thought we’d give him a surprise party.”
“With air horns?”
Charles was no longer listening. He had walked to the other side of the office to pass out air horns to the rest of the staff. With both bags empty, Charles looked at the clock and then announced, “Okay, here’s the plan. Kevin will be here in a few minutes, so let’s all hide and make it look like the office is empty. When he opens the door, I’ll count to three and and we’ll all sound off the air horns.”
“Seven air horns going off in unison,” Robert muttered. “Won’t that be too much of a surprise?”
“Save the discussion for later, ” Charles replied as he switched off the lights, “Everyone hide over here where he can’t see us. He’s coming!”
Charles herded the staff to the dark side of the office where they all stood silently in waiting with air horns in hand. Sure enough, less than a minute later, a doorknob rattled as Kevin opened the door. He stood in the doorway in confusion at the sight of the empty office.
Charles began the countdown.
Kevin’s funeral was three days later.