“Unfocused, distracted, intelligent.”
The man was reading from an official looking form, as he sat across the boardroom table from Jack, who was looking over the man’s shoulder and out the window.
“Does this sound like you, Jack?”asked the man.
“Absolutely not,” said Jack. “I’m shocked and appalled that anyone would suggest that I would eat that much.”
The man raised his eyebrows and looked around the empty boardroom for support.
Jack seemed to read his mind and whispered, “They can’t help you.”
“Jack, my name is Dr Martin, I am here to assist with your ability to focus. My job in the organisation, is to ensure we have cohesiveness across our various brands and that our people are being adequately supported, regardless of their position in the business.”
Jack nodded. “So, your name is Doc Martin?”
“Yes Jack.”
“And you’re the company shrink?”
“Yes Jack,” said Doc Martin patiently.
“And your name is Doc Martin?”
The doctor looked confused, but still nodded.
Jack thought this over, and noticed that some of the paint on the boardroom roof had chipped off into the perfect shape of a duck. ” Doc Martin.”
“Jack,” said Dr Martin. “I would like to take you through a few exercises to enhance your focus…”
“Did you consider the ramifications of becoming a doctor, with a last name like Martin?”
Doc Martin decided the best approach was to press forward. “So, firstly I would like to introduce you to a principle based on some early teachings by –”
“And do you think that someone purposely painted the roof poorly in that particular area, so that a duck would appear?”
Doc Martin put down his papers. “What are you talking about?”
“The duck,” said Jack, pointing to the roof. “His name is Harold. I don’t know if that’s really his name, but I feel in a position to allocate him a moniker in that I don’t know if he has one. Do you know I mean?”
Doc Martin stared at Harold. “Jack,” he said finally. “I’m worried that you don’t have the ability to focus, even on basic tasks.”
“What gives you that idea, Doc Martin?”
“Well, you are distracted by imaginary ducks for one.”
“Who, Harold?”
Doc Martin sat silently.
“It’s okay Doc Martin, we can talk about him – he’s only paint. Well not even paint really, he’s more a gap in the paint. I guess you could say, Harold is a lack of paint.”
There was a quick, functionary knock at the door and Derek, Jack’s boss, walked in. “Everything going okay?”
Doc Martin went to speak, but Jack got in first. “Very well. Doc Martin has been talking with me about how the paint on the roof looks like a duck called Harold. It’s been eye-opening so far, I can’t wait to see what other shapes we find in the decorative fixtures of this room.”
Derek looked at the doctor quizzically.
Doc Martin raised his hands. “We weren’t specifically talking about Harold.”
“Who’s Harold?” asked Derek.
“The duck,” said Doc Martin.
Derek, for the first time ever, looked at Jack for some form of clarification.
“Quack.” said Jack.
“Excuse me?” said Doc Martin.
“That’s what Harold says,” said Jack and he looked Derek in the eye, pleading…”Quack.”
“You can head back to your desk now Jack,” said Derek.
“Thank you, this has been very enlightening, but I think my intelligence and focus is better served elsewhere.”
Jack nodded to Doc Martin, and then to Harold and left them both with Derek.