Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Tis the season to be jolly (or cry, go mental, and try it on with the 19 year old office junior) Brilliant!

Happy Christmas
(you bastard)

It's five weeks to Christmas. Thirty five and a half days from now it will all be over for another year. I say 35 and a half because it's all over by tea-time really, isn't it? By then you are slumped in front of the TV jacked up on mince pies and Baileys watching the Vicar of Dibley wondering if it would be bad manners to go and check your email. (It is by the way.) That is of course if you were involved in the whole racket in the first place. Some people opt out of the Christmas thingy, conscientious objectors, if you will, of the Yuletide season. And I have no problem with them. The thing about Christmas is that you cant sit on the fence, you have to go for it at 1000mph with golden balls and twinkling lights or get the fuck out of the manger all together. There's no in between. But what cant be avoided is the Office's Christmas night out. That's were I come in.

Whilst it maybe 35 days to Christmas it's only 10 days to the start of the Christmas party season, can you feel it people can ya, can ya, eh eh? There is nothing better than having to go out on an all day bender with people you would normally cross the road to get away from. People you cant fucking stand because they are dull or they smell or because they grind on your tits for most of the year. Then you are expected to eat turkey and cranberry sauce with them. Not a fucking chance matey. Oh I see you, with your fake smiles, and air kissing, and the "oh you look fabulous" crap but moments later it's back to your clique and it's all whispering and dirty looks. You stink up my restaurant with your hypocrisy and cheap perfume/cologne.

Worse than the back biting and hate filled smiles are the sycophants and brown nosers. Manuel sees you too. They sit near the boss, normally facing them. They don't start eating until the boss starts eating. They order water if the boss orders water. They are non-committal on whether they are enjoying their meal until the boss says whether they are enjoying their sprout and chestnut risotto (which little man arse kisser ordered too despite originally ordering the turkey but switched because the boss was having the risotto.) If the boss ain't happy the suck-up goes into over drive, shouting and ranting and blaming the waiter. They demand everything be done to correct the problem, normally completely unreasonable demands like have the chef come down and kiss the bosses ring by way of an apology. Meanwhile whilst little man arse kisser is waiting to see the restaurant manager I am usually getting the problem sorted out and putting an end to the drama. These people are real ball busters.

And then there is the Secret Santa carry on. Tony from HR buys you a cats calendar and you got Sheila from Marketing a novelty mug which reads, "I'm a bitch." She laughs, you mean it. Oh the fucking horror of it all. Every year we end up with bags of unwanted "novelty" presents. Miniature tool kits, key rings, Bart Simpson socks, desk top skittles, Looney Tunes ties, miniature gum ball machines the list is as endless as it is painful. And they all get abandoned, either through drunken misadventure or because the recipient is offended with their Secret Santa tat. Saying that some people cling to their present like it was given to them by one of the 3 Wise men. There they are at closing time nursing their office golf set like it was their first born child despite being so drunk they don't even know their own name. Sad beyond words.

Then there is the Christmas crier. Awh bless them. Before the Yule Log and coffee is served there will be somebody crying their eyes out. There is one in every office at every party on every shift. They get dragged to the toilets by their co-workers, who later on will say they knew it was going to happen. There they are the four of them in one cubicle in the toilets all crying together because Tony/Jane in Sales hasn't noticed them or made a cruel joke. The first Christmas Crier last year was clocked within two hours of Christmas Service starting. I'm running a book this year, the first Christmas Crier, how many Christmas Criers, and the ratio of male to female Christmas Criers. I love the Christmas Crier, they make me feel like a normal well balanced individual by comparison. But they aren't the worst offenders. The Christmas Crier is the close relative of the Christmas Mentalist.

I absolutely love the Christmas Mentalist, as long as there are a number of doormen between me and the crazy bastard that is. The Christmas Mentalist, as the name suggests, loses the plot in the worst way. It's a combination of too much drink, which they cant handle, and a whole years resentment and hate bubbling under their Three Piece Suit. What makes the Christmas Mentalist such a fun character is that it's always the last person anyone in the office would suspect to be a grade A basket case. But we can spot them. They have a blank stare, and wear two watches and have manic hair. Their co-workers don't see the signs because they haven't seen him all year despite being in the same office. And that's normally the problem. We had one guy go absolutely stark raving bonkers a year or two ago. Tables and chairs were sent across the bar, followed by glasses, bottles, and the guy that brings the office mail. Oh yes he went daft. He was "escorted" out by three doormen who he decided to take on as well. He regretted that. He did it the year before at another restaurant. Crikey he must have a few issues.

nice

Ah I love the mentalist, especially when they set the Christmas Crier off who then sets of little man arse kisser. Office Christmas Parties are the best. They are a real leveler. The supposedly more professional the group the more they ridiculous they act. For example I had a table of school teachers last year that I had to tell off for throwing wet napkins at each other and shouting at the top of their voices. And then there was the table of lawyers that drank so much alcohol that one of the group actually shit themselves. They threatened to sue us for chucking them out, a suit that never arrived I should add. How do these people face each other again back at work? Married people trying it on with the office junior, the boss in tears, the mentalist, the super drunk, how?

Ten more days people, ten more days until the "normality" of my lovely little restaurant gets bastardised by filthy office parties. Oh the horror, oh the humanity, if it wasn't the most lucrative four weeks of the year I'd go out on the sick until it was over. So who are you, the mentalist, the crier, the lover, or the brown noser?

(Tomorrow, how to survive your office Christmas party)

30 People trying to get Manuel's attention:

Medbh said...

Dear jeebus, that's brilliant, Manuel. There's always the xmas sketchy hook-up, too. The season seems to make people randomly horny for some reason.
I always marvel at the hideous clothes among women: sequins, metallics, quilted vests with reindeer and santa, and too much red and green.
Blech

bendersbetterbrother said...

I'm all of those except the brown-nose. At a Christmas dinner a couple of years ago me and a colleague heckled the guest speaker. We might have been a tiny bit drunker than everyone else. I then followed this up by answering her question about what I thought of my boss. Neither of us had realised he was sitting opposite us at OUR table.
I now work somewhere else.

MJ said...

I am in the envious position of being a freelancer who either has the luxury of working from home or being out on assignment.

If I do need to work a day from someone's office, I'm in and out as quickly as possible. No meetings, no responsibilities.

Perhaps I'll have my own solo home office party. I plan to hang a decorative bell on the cat's collar as he observes me drinking spiked egg nog in my festive antlers.

I look forward to the blogging opportunities that your Christmas party hell will bring us.

Old Knudsen said...

I'm the guy that when everyone wants to go to the pub on the last day says,"I have to work with you I don't have to socialize with you."

ellie said...

At work we gave up on Christmas nights out because it was so obvious no-one really wanted to be there.
Now they shut up shop for a 1/2 day and take us for lunch, it would be stupid to refuse a half day off work so everyone goes. No one drinks. It's torture.

Mudflapgypsy said...

I am none of these options, never having been a mentalist( at a works christmas party) a crier or a lover. Don't shit where you eat !
Anyway, I'm very married, none of that shenanigans for me.
I generally come across as a bit of an ebeneezer as I can't stomach paying out 25 quid for shite food and having to endure the ho-ho-ho of wankers.
This year I am not going to the xmas hell that is the works do.

I think my mental health and my liv er will thank me in the long run.
I do work with some people, at grades well above me who make me nervous with their " I am acting like I have been locked in a cell for 20 years, get it down ye" mentality. You never can be sure of what they will do next.

Bah humbug, I say.

Mrs M has a crier where she works. Two glasses of wine is all it takes to set them apparently.

Oh alright, I did the mentalist bit when I was still in my teens and thought some high grade manager had stolen my bottle of whiskey. A friend escorted me sharply out of the room. No one was hurt and I haven't worked there since the 80s..B0igacyan3a

Anonymous said...

Sooner or later it was bound to happen, I need coffee.

fatmammycat said...

Oh honey, how horribly right you are, it's started early. Smurf's bar had a 'party' in their on Friday, wearing hats and lots of spangly tops. It was hellish. My VELLY deepest sympathies.

sheepworrier said...

I work with a bunch of sober mentalists, god-botherers and borderline OCD / ADHD freaks, so I'll be the one who turns up for the meal (in feckin tony romas of all places), politely scoffs a few bottles of vino and tries to leave before the wine starts numbing my inhibitors too much.
Well, thats the plan anyway...

Manuel said...

Medbh:Oh Christmas clothes are the worst......more of that to follow.....

BBB: Bwahahahaha, v v funny......

MJ: Christmas is pure blog gold.....as long as I have the energy to write it.....

Old Knudsen: Socialise Knudsen, it's socialise.....

Ellie: That's not fair.....you can come on one of ours.......

Flappers: "endure the ho-ho-ho of wankers" hahahaha I'm using that.....

Anonymous: What?

FMC: Oh it's grim for sure, very very grim......

Sheepo: If you can leave early you have my respect......but you wont......my guess it's tie round the head and bottle of wine to mouth.....

dave said...

Personally I can't wait to bastardise the place where we're having our christmas dinner.
Yes, my office has a combination of all the people you described. I, however, do not fall into any of those categories.
I just hope we end up somewhere with a decent pool table.

And what's the deal with some establishments putting on a 'disco' at 2 in the afternoon, with the obligatory 'I wish it could be christmas every day'?
At least you get to laugh at the idiots on the dancefloor I suppose.

Manuel said...

Dave: The afternoon disco is great eh?!! Steaming by tea time and doing the hokey kokey at 3 in the afternoon! Oh what fun! Do Lavery's not do Christmas parties?

sheepworrier said...

Heh, or Queens Student union...

Manuel said...

Sheepo: Nowt wrong with Spuds, stick a few table cloths on the tables, drop the strip lighting a bit whack on a cd and there you go.......baked spud with turkey and cranberry please......

Upset Waitress said...

Bahh! I hate the holidays too. What a bunch of economical BS. It's a friggin mess to boot. Last year my co-worker had the nerve to give me a key-chain shaped sandal. WTF? Yes, gifts can be insulting. Indeed it's the thought that counts. Nothing says I love you like a frickin shoe. And I'm with you on the criers. Isn't this the time of year when most of those whiners commit suicide? Bah! The holidays are tacky also. Red, green, blue, orange, and browns all mixed together. The festive colors of vomit.

Manuel said...

Upset Waitress: I'm sending the ghosts of christmas past round to haunt your ass.....

sheepworrier said...

Oh sweet child o'mine! What the fook have you done to your banner, Manuel?

Its just... just...

*walks out of room, shaking head forlornly*

Manuel said...

Sheepo: 1000MPH or not at all........embrace it.......

dave said...

Just read one of your previous posts in which you had "Portavogie Haddock and Chips with Hilden Ale Batter".

I look forward to your review of the food and service at Hilden Brewery. Oh, I really do!

And I'm with Sheepworrier over the banner...I think you need a poll on that to be honest.

savannah said...

i'm sorry, sugar...but i have to admit, i can't wait for the stories that will soon grace this page!

Is it just me? said...

*shivers running down my spine*..am working part-time in a local creche and although the children are a delight, I've slowly discovered that ALL of the staff fall are either manic depressive or passive aggressive.
They've advised me that I'm invited to their Christmas party in a couple of weeks.
Apparently its a 'gas'..with the creche owner getting completely rat-arsed each year and at least two staff mambers breaking down under the influence of west coast cooler.
I don't know when the 'happy' event is on but have a sneaking suspicion that I'll be busy, very.

Moaning Minion said...

Ah the joys of the workplace! I am also writing a blog about how difficult life is in the workplace.

Please link to my blog "Why I hate my line manager" at http://linemanager.wordpress.com

Manuel said...

Dave: You not loving Hilden Brewery? Spill......the banner stays.....for the time being.....

Savannah: Blog gold......pure gold......

Is it just me: Go and share with me.......

Moaning Minion: What you gonna do for me?

Rosie Cheeks said...

silly poll, Manuel. obviously i'd need to tick more than one box. i don't do christmas parties anymore (and i'm only twenty f*ckin' six) but i could tell you a great story about two brothers, a ball gown, some purloined shoes and pair of braces.

i don't work there any more.

Manuel said...

Rosie: Spill with the story.......less trailer, more story....

Upset Waitress said...

Great, I love a good holiday incubus after my tail :)

Manuel said...

Actually I'd say you do.....

Rosie Cheeks said...

i wouldn't want to ruin the good impression i've made, manuel. ask me about it again when i'm drunk and nostalgic over christmas.

Manuel said...

nice.......

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