Those dreaded office Xmas parties

Working from home as I do, I miss out on most of this, and am glad of it, although we are having a neighbourhood party this evening.

Last week, Someone (Who Shall Not Be Named) came home wearing this paraphernalia:


…but that wasn’t a particularly drunken affair, he just came home a little bit merry. (Yes, the noses do flash)

Yesterday S(WSNBN) had an office Xmas party where the boozing began at 11am. At 4:30pm he phoned me to ask for a lift from the station, because of Sydney’s sudden shortage of buses. (Fair play, the rest of the mob were mostly planning to kick on, and he preferred to come home for family time, aka thrashing the kids at Scrabble.) I was just heading out that way to get something from the shops anyway, so it wasn’t a problem, I thought I’d pick him up on the way and we’d go do the brief shopping errand together.

Dear reader, I got to the station in good time to meet that train, and watched many people leave the station and head in my direction, but not one of them was S(WSNBN). Indeed, I was starting to wonder whether CityRail had not done the dastard and left a train full of commuters sitting immobile just outside Redfern, as they sometimes do, with S(WSNBN) among them. But no. Several minutes after I first became a leetle concerned, my mobile phone rang, and yes, it was S(WSNBN). You know what he’d gone and done? He’d only gone and fallen asleep in the train, and was calling from the next station down the line.

I’m a cruel woman. A very cruel woman. I laughed. Loudly. I refused to drive to the next station down the line, and went and ran my shopping errand while S(WSNBN) waited for a train back to the proper station. And then, because S(WSNBN) was waiting in the usual spot instead of the more-sensible when tigtog’s coming-from-the-opposite-direction spot, I made S(WSNBN) walk back around two corners when I came past to pick him up.

What horrid things have been going on at your office parties?

Categories: relationships, work and family

Tags: , , ,

5 replies

  1. No horridness for me! We met at the cafe downstairs from our office, downed coffees, got on a bus (charter), drove to the country, investigated op shops, drove on to our Director’s abode, ate nibbles while the pizzas cooked (Director had built himself a pizza oven outside during the year) and drank homebrew (again, the Director is obviously quite busy on his ‘work from home Fridays’). Some of the others played boules (on the slope), I walked around a bit with the little tacker in the pram to get him to sleep, the dog was friendly, and when the pizzas were gone we all got back on the bus to get back to our office before 5pm, whereupon we went home. Maybe some of the others kicked on, but there had been napping on the bus, so I doubt it.

  2. Slightly tangential, but christmas and office related – a conversation I just this minute had, regarding departmental christmas presents (I’m a postdoc at a large Australian university).
    (male) Academic: I was told you might be able to help me with this question. We’re going to get some USB memory sticks for our students as christmas gifts … [boring details cut ]… so we have two boys and two girls – should I get pink sticks for the girls? Would that be appropriate?
    Me: Absolutely not.
    Academic: Oh, would that breach university guidelines?
    Me: I have no idea, but I think it’s inappropriate to differentiate between items of that nature on the basis of gender.
    Academic: Oh … well, good to know. [Polite extrication ]
    … and even though I know I was right and have absolutely no qualms about the substance of what I said, I still feel guilty and rude. I think I was unfortunately abrupt and brusque, but the question startled me on several levels – though mostly for its sheer silliness. So I had to get it off my chest, hope this isn’t too O/T.

  3. tynic, I totally understand the startlement that led you to be brusque. Now that it’s happened once, I presume you’ve already come up with several slightly more diplomatic phrasings for the inevitable next time.

  4. I presume you’ve already come up with several slightly more diplomatic phrasings for the inevitable next time.
    I’m thinking semi-hysterical laughter.

  5. Semi-hysterical laughter sounds like an appropriate response to me. I’m not sure that polite or thoughtful is really what’s called for.
    Perhaps tell him he can buy pink ones for anyone who actually wears pink at least once a week, and therefore clearly likes it.
    Incidentally, why does this university have postdoctoral places for children?

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