Dear Aunty Em: Christmas crap
‘How do I cope with the fallout after a Christmas party? As far as I can tell, we all had a great time, there was lots of dancing and fun, yet one of the girls in my team hasn’t spoken to me since Friday. I did my usual ‘phantom’ but then again, so did heaps of people. She’s 30, quite self-conscious, and doesn’t socialise easily. I guess my real question is, how do I cope with spending eight hours a day in close quarters with what feels like primary school level interpersonal crap again?
– Christmas Carol
Dear Christmas Carol,
Christmas is a time of gift giving, overeating and genuinely psycho behaviour. It’s a time when normally quite sane people’s nerves start to fray and the pressures to be MERRY, JOLLY and MOTHERF*CKING HAPPY all the time lead to excessive alcohol consumption.
And you know what booze does? Makes us crack onto Igor and wake up with a strange French man.
Let me tell you a little Christmas tale. One year someone I know – let’s call her Emily – drank about a thousand wines at the Christmas party of her new workplace.
She then proceeded to recount her sexual history in vivid detail to anyone who would listen and locked amorous missiles onto her defenceless colleague named Igor; the same Igor who looked like a half-starved Russian despot and who’d just separated from his wife.
Emily kindly offered to lick his emotional wounds but Igor, who was fortuitously quite sober, tried to put Emily in a cab.
The story should end there but Emily, ever the resourceful Girl Guide, decided to attend another Christmas party as a surprise guest.
At this shindig, there was a lonely looking French man standing at the bar so Emily befriended him, insisted he buy her a McChicken and then passed out in his bed like the classy lady she is.
Upon waking, our poor heroine realised her mistake and quickly fled the Sofitel, denying herself the free breakfast and casual sex that was on offer.
My point is that Christmas parties are a place where deep shame is inseminated into the fabric of our working lives. Think back: at any point did you offer to a) have a threesome with her and her boyfriend, b) teach her some social skills out of the kindness of your inebriated heart, or c) share your true feelings about her ability to perform her job?
If you can’t remember doing anything truly offensive, assume she’s crazy and treat her like an RSPCA dog marked ‘Professional animal handlers only’; with extreme caution.