WASHINGTON—The U.S. Department of Spells and Incantations announced Monday the discovery of a new magical word. "Fringle-Stumpf," when spoken clearly by a person in the workplace, will cause that person's employer to become violently ill.
"The word has been classified as a fourth-level hex," said Andrew Gottlieb, Assistant Warlock of the D.S.I., speaking for U.S. Spellmaster General Willard Henforth, who is currently on sick leave. "Anyone with sufficient runelore to activate its sinister powers can visit great woe upon the person whose signature appears on their paycheck."
Diseases ranging from scurvy to pneumonia to explosive diarrhea have afflicted test bosses at D.S.I. laboratories in Washington, while control bosses, to whom only gibberish was spoken, have suffered no more than a headache.
The new magic word is believed to be the greatest breakthrough in modern spell-casting since 1991's discovery that "Bosh-Hen-Grelob" will blind an unfaithful spouse. The most recent fourth-level hex to be discovered was 1994's "Ong-Mashar," a relatively minor discovery since it only rids the body of pinworms. It is believed, however, that an anticipated rise in pinworm-related boss illnessesmay greatly popularize "Ong-Mashar."
According to Gottlieb, he origins of the new word are as yet unclear. "It is wondered whether 'Fringle-Stumpf' was a Druidic curse, or perhaps the nameof an ancient disgruntled employee whose spirit haunts cruel bosses to this day. Then again, so long as it makes one's boss vomit blood copiously, who cares?"
As for its impact upon the modern workplace, a new golden age of benevolence on the part of bosses is predicted. "No boss will want to anger their employees now," said Craig Sundborne, assistant editor of American Magic Magazine. "Firings may remain the same, since a person who lays off an employee is technically no longer the 'boss' of the angry party, but for those employees remaining on the payroll, expect some serious restructuring."
No one is more thrilled by the discovery than America's employees. "I am Gruber, Lord of Wendy's," said fast-food worker Todd Gruber, speaking from his velvet-lined throne next to the hamburger grill. "I shall complete our customer's orders if and when it pleases me."
Gruber's employer, 61-year-old Jim Herbst, was not permitted to comment, as he was busy giving his employee a pedicure. Said Gruber, "I think I shall speak some magic words... although, if a strawberry margarita were filling my mouth I would be unable to do so." Herbst then shuffled out of the store, visibly dazed.
Dozens of corporate CEOs have been hospitalized since the discovery, which was circulating across the Internet less than two hours after its confirmation. Microsoft head Bill Gates is currently at University of Puget Sound Hospital receiving treatment for swine flu and four other diseases, while Coca-Cola chief Ted Loesser's skeletal structure is slowly dissolving due to an osteopathic ailment not yet identified by science.
"Fringle-Stumpf" is scheduled to be scribed into the National Grimioreon Wednesday at midnight by a robed magi using a quill pen dipped in virgin's blood. All loyal servants of the Unnameable Dark One are invited to attend.