They make me laugh every time. They are written to the entire firm. This is both lovely and ridiculous. They betray a serious misunderstanding of people's line of sight and relative importance.
They are usually titled something like "Farewell and Warmest Thanks - Ride the Rhino" and read something like this
I am sure you are all aware that tomorrow sees my retirement from the practice of law after nine decades all of which has been spent at Shitflaps. You may know that but even your combined intellect cannot fathom how deeply I have enjoyed the many attributes of this most unique place.
When I stepped into the Law Offices of Harold D "Windy" Shitflap in Arkansas in 1936, I was bearing the bruises of a difficult summer representing the United States at the Munich Olympics. Those tribulations in the glare of the Fuhrer himself turned out to be an excellent preparation for my time working for Windy. As the business grew, so did my desire to work across the broad sweep of countries our business was growing into and so I distanced myself from Windy. After the War I enjoyed years working in Paris France, Edinburgh in Scotland in England, and in Germany itself, near Rome. I developed a wonderfully broad range of languages, friends and multicultural relationships, and taught them all about how America had already conquered the many democratic challenges that they were grappling with and, frankly, making a terrific mess of. I told them this was largely to do with the fact that they had not resolved the issue of how to manage people from the South.
Then in 1951 I was fortunate enough to be asked to return to Arkansas on the death of Windy, to head up the newly merged firm of Shitflap Gaseous Excreta which was making inroads into the market. While managing the many brilliant Americans in our global firm I maintained my practice in the leisure sector and acted for many proud American institutions including Hugh Hefner whose parties were second to none. How fondly I recall the Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Proceedings in which we acted in relation to a really quite interesting albeit esoteric point...[continues for 9 pages]. That's life, as Sinatra sang.
No firm can match the strength, depth, breadth, width, headth, feadth, nedth, sedth and, let's just come out and say it, crystal medth of Shiftlap Gaseous. Yes we've had our ups and downs and side moves and let's not forget the Incident. God rest his soul and the missing parts. But nobody does it like Shitflap. Dang no sir. Quality quality quality - that's what clients say they want. And what do we give them? Well it depends how much they pay, doesn't it. As we say at Shiftlap it's nether a tary or a nary that makes a wary man hairy.
But above all my friends it is the culture I love above all things. I know that wherever I go in the world, there's going to be someone in that town who has worked with Shitflaps who can say "Hell yeah, I know Don. Everybody knows Don" and give me that look. And when he walks down my Main Street in my town I will return the gesture. You don't get that at Latham & Watkins now, do ya? And you don't get the rainbow slides and the rhino buckaroo rodeo either. And I've ridden that rhino baby. So I say to you, ride the rhino. It's wonderful like you all.
J. Don Ronson Puberty III
Then everyone replies all with stuff like "Yeah Don! You've always been the reason I come into work. I can honestly say that this place is gonna ache like a boner without you here".
Sorry, I realise this email was sent to all. Please accept my apologies if you are offended by my boner. Go Pubey.
Then someone who hasn't read the email properly says "I'd just like to add my condolences to the family of Don in this difficult time".