It’s that time of the year when those social butterflies of the office start soliciting donations, selling tickets, and generally making it impossible to forget that the Non-Denominational Winter Holiday Gathering. You and I know it as the Office Christmas Party. Now if you’re like me, you’d rather drive a blunted screwdriver into your eye than go to one of these functions, but since it’s being held during the day it’s slightly better than actually staying at your desk, but only because there’s a good chance that you’ll get home a hour or two earlier than you would on a normal Friday. Personally, if I could stay at my desk and get a few things done while everyone else wandered off to be festive, I’d be perfectly happy with the alone time.
Sadly, the Christmas party is yet another score keeping activity, so I’ll be there with a gratuitous smile plastered on my face. I’ll overpay for lunch and do my best to duck out at the first available opportunity. Even in the face of peer pressure, I won’t be participating in the gag gift exchanges or endless number of parlor games that the diehards are going to want to play. If you really want me to get into the Christmas spirit, give me a bottle of bourbon and a roaring fire… or at a bare minimum make this a non-official function and open the bar. At least with booze flowing there’s a chance that something interesting might happen. As it is, it will be the same tired work people talking about the same tired work issues. Hard to believe anyone wouldn’t be in a festive mood for that.
Editorial Note: This part of a continuing series of posts previously available on a now defunct website. They are appearing on http://www.jeffreytharp.com for the first time. This post has been time stamped to correspond to its original publication date.