Back in the Bad Old Days, this was a week I dreaded.
It was the week of the office drinks.
I enjoy a sup as well as the next man, and generally I am not that fussy about where I sup my sup. I can drink at the bar or in a lounge. I can enjoy a wee dram by the fire at home. I can neck a can in the garden or on the beach. As Herself would say – I would drink drink off a sore leg. In fact I would go so far as to say I will drink anywhere, with one major exception.
There is one place where the finest whiskey will taste like drain cleaner, or a can of stout will go down like a lead baloon, and that is in an office.
The week before Christmas was traditionally the time when the various departments in my place of employment would open the bottom drawers in their filing cabinets and produce the booze. We were then expected to go around the various departments and “show our faces”. I fucking hated that lark, but orders were orders and we had to do it. I usually fucked off to the pub in the sure and certain knowledge that the various offices would be too pissed to notice whether I was there or not.
There is something very very wrong about drinking in an office. You can’t slop a pint down anywhere in case you would drench some important memo. You can’t sit anywhere as there are only enough chairs for the staff of that office and naturally they are always taken. Worst of all though is the conversation. The only topic is work, naturally enough. You are surrounded by computers, phones and filing cabinets so it is impossible to get away from the subject.
This is one week when I am particularly glad I don’t work any more.