Tuesday, March 21, 2006

office parties, agressive girlscouts and other ramblings

I'd like to start by saying this is not my office. We're not that colorful here at the stupid day job. It is a random picture I found on google image search titled "boring office party". It seemed appropriate given my day.

I knew it was coming. It happens to everyone here. The embarrising office birthday party. If I was smart, I would have taken the day off, but they would have found a way to make it happen. It's fate, might as well bend over and take it proper.

It starts off with the card that is not so sneakily passed around the office, the conversations in Spanish that I catch pieces of, the missing receptionist around 1:00pm who has gone to get the cake. Around 3:00 the people upstairs waunder downstairs without much purpose, pooking thier heads into cubicles, chatting, shuffling thier feet. "Gee" you might wonder, "It looks like they are waiting for something." At 3:15 the entire office mysteriously disapears and I'm left alone in a strangely quiet office.

"Hey, SL2000, we forgot to tell you about the staff meeting in the back."

Staff meeting. The CIA couldn't plan a better covert operation.

I walk back to see the entire department quietly seated around a conference table, looks of bordom masked by bright smiles. A mondest cake, flowers and a card sit at the end of the table. A broken chorus of "happy birthday" is mumbled, watches are glanced at, feet shuffled.

As the entire office is on a diet, only 5 people end up having any cake, which I have to cut. The plastic barbie maintains her super bright smile and botoxed wide eyed look through the enitre "party", I'm left to wonder if the new injection has left her unable to form any other expression. The Barracuda is in attendance, sitting dead center as though she's about a to lead a meeting. The thought "fake interest, fake interest" seems to be floating through her head. I'm asked what my plans are. "dinner" I say. I'm asked how old I am. "26" I say. The conversation is over. I feel I should mention that the Barracuda's Helper was not in attendance. She had pressing work to do.

The conversation centered around Cold Stone Creamery for 10 minuets, then the party fell silent. I wolfed my cake, tossed the flowers in a vase and announced I was going back to work.

"so soon?" The Plastic Barbie asked, eyes struggling to blink.

Yes. This soon. I'd rather spend my birthday chained to the computer than watch a group of people who have nothing in common other than a shared cubical wall try to hold a social conversation. As I walk away I can hear the Barracuda change the conversation to work, and relief sweeps over the table.

Embarresing office pary complete.

Mind waundering:
The assult by girlscouts.

I've been told there aren't girlscouts in Brooklyn. I'd like to set the record straight on that misconception.

The girlscouts in Brooklyn aren't cute little girls in green uniforms ringing the bell of your house. Often times, they aren't even little girls. No. The girl scouts in my neck of the woods, tend to be middle-aged black men with an agressive sales pitch.

It seems to be a block by block compitition taken so seriously, the cookies have been ripped out of thier little hands and given over to "Dad" or "big brother" who has himself a plan. Usually folding tables are set up on street corners and mountains of boxes girlscout cookies are placed on them like a rumage sale. The salesman bullies and guilt-trips every passerbyer into buying at least one box, sometimes several. The good ones parade thier sad-eyed children around who will chase you down the street screaming "buy my cookies!" The really good ones will set up shop near the church, just to double the sense of guilt.

I try to avoid these street corners, but have found myself with a box of those thin mint cookies, holding them up like a shield to announce I've done my neighborhood duty for the season.

"these are the people in my neighborhood, in my neighborhood......"

Back to the birthday:

I forgot to mention that my birthday was indeed very good. I have pretty much decided that embarrising office pary had nothing to do with me, and moved on. I went to my favorite resturant with MD, who presented me with a few lovely gifts and had my favorite food (Tai food, the Lard Nor noodles with tofu, egg and brocoli), then proceeded to go home and fall alseep. Guess I just don't party like I used to. But to be fair, Tuesday is a rough day of the week to have a birthday and I was really exhasted. My B-day celebration will continue through the week, as I go out to dinner with Ms. Creative on Thursday (and drinks, many of them, no doubt) and then go out of town with MD to (gulp) meet the parents.

More on that later..........


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