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United States
I’ll do it, but only if you’ll help

Pledge “thesalmonquits”

"I will quit my job by disappearing, and leaving a whole large salmon on my desk early one morning. but only if 10 other people will do the same. Because you know you want to."

— Jeff, Woefully Underappreciated Charity Worker

Deadline to sign up by: 31st December 2005
5 people signed up, 5 more were needed

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This job is no longer interesting or worth its meagre salary. Quitting would not be interesting enough, and would not encapsulate my feelings of negativity enough for this execrable job. Mis-sold to me horribly with lies and half-truths, I will leave as soon as I am able by coming into work before my inept boss - removing all my belongings - and placing one LARGE WHOLE SALMON across my desk.
Surreal, yes. Genius, yes. And probably the only whole dead animal you could leave on your desk without them calling the police...
I urge you, other disgruntled workers, to leave a salmon on your desk - and find a better job! Be more appreciated - and unshackle yourself from the drudgery of it all!

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  • Jeff, I applaud your admirable sentiment. Why should those who just want to "give something back" to the world have to sacrifice their pride, their sense of self, their very souls, in order to do it? Surely there must be more than this??

    Alas, I am a management consultant and thus sold my soul long ago, with no escape. Even if I weren't stuck here and could disappear as you suggest, it would be a live goat left in my place, and not a dead salmon.
    Fatima, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Ah, I'm sorry to hear that, Jeff! A brilliant plan. Might I suggest that an oversized root vegetable takes the place of the salmon, though?!

    I can hear the post-departure conversations in the staff kitchen now, "What an ingenious guy - imaginative and thoughtful to the end" - as they each hack off a bit as a toast to you.

    Compare this to receiving only puzzled grimaces about the lingering stench of salmon (your lasting legacy). And pity the poor woman who has to bin the rotting blighter - I'm not sure that her lasting memories of you would be too favourable? So why not spare yourself the bad karma and raise a smile instead?

    Check out
    Milly, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • I agree with Milly totally, why should a fish die just for you to make a point?

    Lesley Dove, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Er....... Lesley, Milly - Get Real. Sometimes fish die. Let them die in a wonderful and worthwhile way - for humour. What of the fish that died for Monty Python's Flying Circus' Fish Slapping Dance? Truly dying for something they would have believed in. Genius. Let's just keep things in perspective. I have a few days left of my job - and the salmon is on the way!
    parryphernalia, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Good luck bro, I relate to your pldge. I don't have a job to quit, but I would have loved to leave a couple of old jobs in style with your other pledgers. Good luck to all of you! Peace, me :)
  • Yes, I agree with you to a point, Jeff. Sometimes fish die. And the idea of you bringing in a wizened old fish with a long, grey beard and a zimmer frame is kinda cutsey. (Or have I been watching too much "Finding Nemo"?) Indeed, I'd be very impressed if you found one like that, that died of old age.

    Er, but wild salmon are an endangered species! Now call me old fashioned, but I'm not sure that the idea of killing something on a whim - especially something which is facing extinction - is particularly farcical?! There must be a reason why there are whole charities set up to trying to save them:-

    By your logic, could we not hire a hitman to bludgeon you to death in a comical way? A large salmon with a club, perhaps?!

    If any of the above strikes you as being an "over-sentimental" attitude to hold towards a salmon, then perhaps I could just trouble you for one further reply? I won't take up too much of your time; I know that you have an important plan to finalise.

    Perhaps you would be so kind as to explain what you think that the difference is between your good self and a salmon, that entitles one to be used over the other in the name of comedy?

    Yours expectantly,

    Milly xxx
    Milly, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Oh Milly. such innocence. I am not going to hunt down a fish myself - I shall buy one from a fishmonger. No slaying for myself- not that I'm against it, it just wouldn't be practical - live Wild Salmon are a very endangered species in central London and I'm not sure I'd really head to Scotland/Norway/Canada to find a live one just to slay for my plan.
    Being clubbed with a salmon would be an ideal way to die - utterly hysterical. the only problem is the lack of limbs that could hold a club. If we could get over that hurdle I'd be willing to sacrifice myself for the humour of it. Sadly their little fins dont reach in the middle - you could perhaps design a club with a small handle?
    Your question: The difference between me and a salmon? interesting. presumably you don't want the obvious answer about anatomical differences and such - more of a soul-based argument about "Am I worth more than a salmon?". Not that I'm particularly Christian - but Jesus said (allegedly) "a man is worth many Sparrows" meaning that we have a soul, and a proper brain capable of communication/emotion/yadda yadda yadda - and thus more worthy than other lower animals - especially a delicious salmon.
    Are you a vegetarian or something? or just a big fan of fish?
    Jeff, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Thanks for your reply, Jeff. No, you’re right – it wouldn’t be the best idea to personally scan the oceans of Norway in search of a bunch of bingo-playing geriatric salmons. I mean, think of the air miles that you’d clock up in doing that. You probably wouldn’t want to leave a huge carbon footprint behind – on top of your already [arguably] unethical leaving present! ;-D

    Those were very interesting comments regarding the perceived superiority of man over beast. I am not sure that boyfriends with premenstrual girlfriends up and down the country would agree that those with ‘superior emotions’ have the right to take the lives of those with ‘lesser emotions’. If it’s intelligence that’s the key factor in determining ‘superiority’, then should an accountant have the right to kick a binman’s head in if he feels like it? Or would it be okay if it were done in the name of comedy?

    Sadly, following her stroke, my Nana lost her ‘brain capable of communication’ – are you suggesting that we leave her behind on your desk as a sacrifice? Would the chattering of animals such as birds and whales not suggest that humans have no monopoly on the power to communicate? Anyone who has experienced the whining of a tormented dog once its owner has left the room will also testify that animals clearly feel emotion. Likewise, animals in pain display writhing and facial contortions similar to our own. They are also quick in fleeing from a source of threat or pain – in fact, I am sure they could flee with a lot more speed and dexterity than my poor old Nana.

    Which leads to how can we tell whether or not an animal has a soul. How can we tell that humans, even, have a soul? Do we therefore simply rely on writings in the Bible – written centuries ago, by man living in a time and culture quite different from our own, rather than by Jesus, and transcribed from one language to another over the years – as an excuse to exploit animals just because we feel like it? Referring to your good self in particular, can you justify your actions by basing them on something which is written in a book which you don’t particularly believe in?

    Obviously you know your soon-to-be ex work colleagues better than I do (they might be a pack of wolves, for all I know), but can you really see them eating the salmon, rather than binning it in a civilised way?

    Oh, by the way, I know that you’re not particularly Christian, Jeff, but I think that I have found the answer to your ‘being clubbed-to-death by a Salmon Hitman’ prayers. Check out the fancy dress hire shop:

    who do a dapper fish costume. And what good fortune that the company is based close to you (in West London).

    Oh, and I couldn’t leave without a final plea. Please, Jeff, don’t eat my Nana!

    Milly xxx
    Milly, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • "The question is not, "Can they reason?" nor, "Can they talk?" but rather, "Can they suffer?" - Jeremy Bentham.

    Lesley Dove, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • As a consultant, I'm quite worried by Fatima's comment. What if our respective bosses found out that goats would give better advice and provide fresh milk too?

    Mrs Goat, should we sack all the people who make stuff that we can sell, purposelessly kill some fish, or just sit back and chew on some grass?
    Steve, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Surely you're not suggesting that we leave behind a pregnant goat? (Animals only produce milk when they're pregnant - but you knew that, right?!)

    I'm all for novel ways of replacing the office water cooling machine, but is having fresh milk on tap really worth the continual goat afterbirth stains on the carpet? What do we do with the resulting baby goat herd - make them office juniors? And what are the kids going to live on - if we're suckling off their mummy? Snacks from the vending machine?

    Do we pick straws for who gets the job of artifically inseminating Mummy Goat to keep her constantly 'with child'?!
    Flynn, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • The thing is, is that the salmon is already dead when you enter the shop to buy it so it's beside the point.

    Its not like he's going to raise the salmon as his own and then club in to death with a goat - ITS ALREADY DEAD! It is irrelevant whether anyone eats it or not at this stage, surely?

    And whats the goat got to do with anything anyway?

    And this isn't about the salmon, he could have easily choosen a chicken, or an egg or even a lump of cheese - its about leaving something random in your mysterious wake!
    Brain, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Brian, I completely understand the randomness part of it all. Which is precisely why Milly was spot on with her idea of "an oversized root vegetable" taking the place of the salmon.

    Yes of course the salmon will be dead when you enter the shop. It's all about supply and demand - salmons, like chickens or any other creature, are only there in the shop, dead, in anticipation of customer demand.

    Essentially, by buying these things we are paying someone else for having done the dirty work for us. In this case, the dirty work is killing an endangered species (the salmon) for profit.

    If we didn't demand salmon from the supplier, then he'd look to get his livelihood elsewhere. End of.

    So if ten (being the number of people in the pledge) less of us demanded salmon - which would only end up in the dustbin at work, if we're honest, I think that can only be a good thing.
    Flynn, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • I'm sorry...have I missed something? Who said the bloody Salmon should be wild?

    Of course, eating endangered animals isn't a good idea - a very bad one in my opinion but haven't we gone off on a random tangent which has nothing to do with the pledge?
    Brain, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Whatever has happened to this delightful pledge of mine? An amusing tale of leaving a fish on a desk, has roused the vegetarian liberals to make some daft arguments. Do you think for a moment that this is entirely serious? Do you think all 10 people signed to the pledge are actually waiting to go shopping for salmon? You've missed the point entirely.
    And besides, I don't like to argue with anyone who makes a slightly tenuous and very tangential point and adds a "end of" to it, as if making more of a point.
    Leave me alone, and go back to your brocolli. If you like the pledge: sign the damned thing!
    Jeff, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Sorry Brian, did you mean that you were going to specifically ask for a factory farmed fish? Did you know that the increase in the number of fish farms is also harming wild fish populations?

    Did you know that it takes 5 tons of fish caught from the sea to produce one ton of factory farmed salmon?

    Did you know that inland factory-farmed fish are intensively crowded in shallow concrete troughs?

    Did you know that this spreads infection and parasites, so factory fish farmers use antibiotics to get more fish fatter faster?

    Did you know that parasites commonly found on factory farmed fish are also infecting wild populations? Wild fish would never come into contact with more than a few lice during their lifetime.

    Did you know that increasing numbers of fish farms has led to increasing numbers of lice in waters which effectively eat fish alive?

    Did you know that besides antibiotics, growth promoting drugs and disinfectants, other chemicals used in fish farming include the pigment Canthaxanthin, used to turn the fish's flesh from its natural grey to pink? Canthaxanthin is banned as an additive in food but fed to fish which are bred to be eaten. It is banned in the USA because it is believed to be carcinogenic.

    Do you think that carcinogenic compounds being fed to fish is a good idea?

    The idea is to leave something profound behind at work - but why leave behind something so inconsiderate and thoughtless?
    Flynn, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Jeff - blanket label of "daft arguments" left by you, I see, whilst demonstrating no ability to counter them, or explain why they are tenuous or tangential. Pity, as I'm always interested to hear other people's views.

    Anyways, good luck with the pledge - I am really pleased that none of you are going to go ahead and buy salmon. Sadly not everyone who reads your pledge will be as intelligent and discerning as yourself. Some people might follow it through, and I don't like to think of people being led astray, without understanding the irony of it.

    Still, if you've learned something about salmon than that can only be a good thing, surely? ;-)
    Flynn, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • okay Flynn - what do you think would be a profound thing to leave?

    And I would hope that noone is foolish enough to take what is said on the web to be the entire we few seem to either take it entirely seriously or as a whimsical idea of someone who needs something else to think about other than their horrible job...

    But perhaps I underestimate...
    Brain, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Flynn,

    While you are obviously very passionate about the environment, which is an admirable trait, I think you are missing the point somewhat. This is a JOKE. This is not one evil man with a heart of stone trying to persuade ten gullible innocents to sell their souls to the devil by slaughtering defenceless creatures. This is someone frustrated by a mindless job, using the visual image of a final prank as a way of relieving the tedium of his few remaining days.
    Indeed, Jeff is a friend of the salmon. Look at how he has raised awareness of its plight by providing a forum for its discussion. Of course, this is a serious issue, but there has to be room for a little humour, otherwise all of our lives would be a lot more dull.

    Not that I really care about salmon, to be honest. Unless it's smoked, sliced, and nestling on a plate with some granary toast and dill mayonnaise.

    Regarding my earlier comment about leaving a live goat in my place should I quit my job, I was quite serious. However, I mentioned nothing about it producing milk. Of course, it should be a female goat, and although it would be tethered to the desk for a short time, I would make sure to leave an adequate supply of food and water, and would leave instructions for it to be immediately transferred to Africa (with the requisite amount of space in the cage for its comfort) so that it could boost the flock of a rural village (which would have a male goat to impregnate it), thereby providing much-needed milk to the starving children. I would be grateful if you could let me know if any part of this is unsatisfactory, and I will amend my plans accordingly.

    Please, all of you, direct your anger towards something more worthy of rage, like war, famine, rape, and the fact that the shops put up Christmas decorations at the end of September.
    Fatima, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Dear Fatima,

    The reference to pregnant goats was simply in response to Steve's comment about getting fresh milk from the goat, rather than in response to your original message. If the tone of any of my comments has been perceived as too serious – angry, even – and the intended ironic humour behind any of them has been missed, then I must apologise profusely. It is ironic indeed that the need has been felt to explain the humour behind Jeff’s pledge to me. Maybe Alan Partridge and Ali G have a society which I could join, set-up after their inundation with hate mail letters naively sent in by members of the public.

    Fatima, only because you have asked for our attentions to be focused on things worthy of rage, do I make one final serious point, before I disappear into the blackhole of both Christmas and “The End of the Pledge” (or should that be, the end of what has become “The Salmon Forum”?) For yes, there has been a very serious message interwoven in all of my comments.

    Countries whose people are starving are using their land to grow grain for export to feed the West’s farmed animals. Nutritionally valuable food is being fed to animals to produce meat, which Western countries are literally gorging themselves to death on.

    The greatest single influence on the growth of diseases such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes is the amount of animal fat and protein that are eaten – the more one eats, the greater one’s risk (

    A huge scientific study called the China Health Study found that the biggest killers in this country increased alarmingly as people changed from a more simple, predominantly vegetarian or vegan diet, to a Western diet obsessed with meat and dairy products.

    Now we are exporting factory farming to the developing world. Meat and dairy consumption is rising and so are the associated health problems. Please, please, please if you look at no other link, look at this report from the World Health Organization to see what a mess the world is in. The biggest killers in the developing world are far different to what we’re all led to believe by the media…

    It’s written in a way that is really easy to read, and there’s loads of pictures. So I would strongly disagree that sending goats or cows are the way forward.

    Also, a single dairy cow produces around 400 litres of methane gas each day and cutting out just two cow-based meals a month could reduce your family’s annual greenhouse gas emissions by up to 30 per cent!

    See also how we can feed more of the world, and incur minimal environmental destruction, without inflicting our bad Western dietary habits on developing countries:

    Anyways, before I bid you all a fond farewell, you asked for ways of making a profound exit. Erm, if it were me, I would suggest leaving a trail throughout the office to keep em guessing. An unlocked ball and chain near the front door. A pair of shoes a little further on. Trousers on the stairs (small adult size). On the landing a pair of pants – teenage boy’s. Halfway across the floor, a shirt – primary school size. A little further on, on the way to your desk, a vest – baby size. Then on your desk a small jar, labelled “Caution: Thin Air”

    Hope that everyone has a great Christmas and a fab New Year! Good luck with the new jobs.

    Awra best,

    Flynn, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • I not only think a fish *should* die for this, I think all fish everywhere should be hauled out of the ocean and placed on office desks everywhere. But why stop at fish? How about some California condors, or harp seals? Maybe Pomeranians? No matter which animal you choose to kill and leave on your desk, it will surely make you the most beloved co-worker at your office.
    Jadetree, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • I think that not only *should* a fish die for this - I think all fish should be dragged out of the sea and placed on office desks everywhere. But why stop there? How about harp seals, California condors, or even spotted owls? No matter which animal you choose to kill and leave on your desk, you will surely become the most beloved coworker at your office.
    Jadetree, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Excuse the double post above. Whenever someone starts talking about making an animal suffer for someone else's enjoyment, I get all giddy and antsy.
    Jadetree, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
  • Jeff, you've had a brilliant idea, and if I had a job I'd pledge to quit it in a similar fashion. However, I despise spending money on items or activities that are even peripheral to any employment, much less jobs that I HATE. May I suggest that you use a smallish roadkill instead? It would eliminate any (unlikely) qualms you might eventually feel about supporting the fishing industry, provide an obvious allegory for your work experience, smell at least as bad a fish, and you wouldn't have to spend any of your own money. Depending on where you live, I might be able to hook you up with a selection of partially caved-in, tire-marked, high-intensity stench beasts.

    Alternatively, you could get a preserved mudshark from a college or high school biolab or biological supply company and put it on a large hoagie roll. Those are the second-worst commonly available things I've ever smelled. (Decomposing molluscs, especially octopus, come in first, and a garbage bag full of year-old, decaying, partially perfused, headless hamsters is third.)

    Good luck!
    zola potts, 14 years ago. Abusive? Report it!
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Current signatories (Green text = they've done it)

Jeff, the Pledge Creator, joined by:

  • Bobby Davro
  • Desmundo F.
  • Bryan Mehi
  • zola potts
  • 1 person who did not want to give their name

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