where i take a sit-com waaay too seriously
there are a million things i love about the office including stanley’s dignified, deadpan refusal to put up with michael’s shit, the fact that ryan, in all his under-employed, sarcastic and occupationally impotent glory, often reminds me of a more talented, subtle and better looking version of the SS jeff and my hunch that a physical altercation between michael and toby is an inevitability.
however, this season i have also appreciated how much mercy and grace the workers at dunder-mifflin extend to michael scott. when michael violated oscar by outing him in front of the whole office, oscar snapped and called michael “ignorant and small.” but instead of following up that accusation with a command to go _____ himself, in the ___, with a stainless steel, serrated _____, like i would if my former lightway monkey had screeched something revealing about me in our little tree, he apologized and subjected himself to a painfully physical reconciliation. moreover, last night when michael, in his absurd grief, required his workers to attend a memorial service for a dead bird, pam didn’t call him a dollar store _____ ___ and suggest that he grow the ____ up and grow a _____, like i likely would if the chimp who served as my mentored ministry adviser at S.H.I.T. had asked us to chip in five bucks to send flowers for the wake of his townie girlfriend’s nascar lovin’ third cousin, but she facilitated his irrational outpouring of grief by creating a casket for the bird and convincing dwight to break out the recorder. none of this is to say that the dunder mifflin crew takes michael seriously or even that they refuse to make a joke at his expense, but they consistently, if begrudgingly, offer him mercy instead of condemnation and even invite him to experience community in the midst of his alienation.
i find their admittedly fictional treatment of michael incredibly beautiful. moreover, in a very real sense the dunder-mifflin crew challenges me to both maintain my sense of humor about my occupational lot in life and be a reconciler in this horribly inane environment. in the end, they challenge me to fulfill paul’s imperative in 2 Cor. 5:16-22 and so live out the full restoration that is available in Christ.
one more thing, props to whomever gave dwight my phone number this week. that was funny.