The free lunches and self-replenishing pantries of New York’s start-ups can occasionally bring to mind Cockaigne, the mythical medieval land where cakes grew on trees, meat pies rained from the sky and fish leaped from rivers to roast themselves and fly directly into waiting mouths. In one 13th-century French epic poem, “Huon de Bordeaux,” a paradisiacal river restores health and youth to all who drink from it. Today’s version? Coconut water.
The New York Times

Dear Employees:

We hope you’ve been enjoying the caviar station next to the copy center. As we complete our fourteenth round of venture capital funding, we are pleased to announce some additional workplace perks, to be added to the list outlined in the brochure you received during your month-long orientation at Nirvana All-Inclusive Beach Resort. We trust that you still have the brochure, since, like all of our corporate literature, it is made of gold.

Our on-site massage therapists will now be available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, including holidays. They will be joined by skilled aromatherapists, who will be able to customize the scent of your cubicle, along with audiotherapists, who will produce mood-relaxing nature sounds, live, with the power of their own voices. Please select your preferred natural environment when you next log on to our Intranet.

We’ve been told that the free housecleaning services we provide are not comprehensive enough to rid you of all your domestic worries and allow you to focus completely on your job. We want to make you feel like the office is an oasis — a magical land where mundane concerns disappear and Greek yogurt is plentiful. In addition to washing, ironing, and mending your clothes, our cleaners will be organizing your closets, selecting art for your walls, and cleaning out your refrigerators. They will also be selling your house, since why do you need it when you live at work?

Aside from the free haircuts we already offer in the lobby, personal groomers will be available to trim beards, apply makeup, replace your teeth with lower-maintenance implants, or perform basic outpatient surgical procedures, including the implantation of devices that will deliver low doses of caffeine, enabling you to keep working longer. In our new gym and spa, you may utilize the services of a free personal trainer, yoga instructor, or biogenetic engineer, who can turn back the clock on your aging cells and eliminate the need for sleep. Who’s up for a 3 a.m. meeting? There will be bagels.

There are free movie tickets in a dispenser outside the People Management office, along with complimentary admission vouchers to nearby skate parks, climbing walls, and ski slopes, all of which we own and allow you to fully multitask. Yes, that’s a workstation over by the water slide. We’re also proud to reveal our brand-new high-tech toilets. We’ll be analyzing all of your excretions and using the collected data to provide even better perks in the future. Are you getting enough fiber? We’ll be coming around with chocolate-covered prunes this afternoon.

The free matchmaking services we provide have led to dozens of marriages, performed for free on-site, yielding couples aligned with our corporate mission. Take your honeymoon on us, at our satellite office in the Caribbean, equipped with the newest videoconferencing equipment and — don’t worry — plenty of Greek yogurt. Our procreation bonuses and on-site child care allow you to start a family without leaving the workforce. Our pet-friendly offices will soon be filled with a variety of cuddly, easy-to-trust animals. Don’t worry, they aren’t watching you and reporting your activities to management. At least not yet.

Enjoy some more cookies from our friends at Stepford Drone Bakery. They’re delicious, and proven to suppress the hormones that might lead you to rebel. Could we trouble you to take a deep breath? You might feel a slight pinch. Don’t worry, you’ll wake up soon, and there will be a chef standing over you, offering you a lobster roll. How about a free T-shirt?

Cheers,
Your Vice-President of Cost-Benefit Analysis, Workplace Fun Division