5 Office Xmas Party Horror Stories
Welcome to the second part of our summer series, where we ask a few of our contributors to share their wisdom on a single topic. Earlier this week we brought you suggestions for the newly graduated, but now, as our full time staff make ready for the longest lunch of the year, we thought we should ask our contributors to share some Office Christmas Party horror stories.
My last corporate Christmas party was Hollywood themed. The idea was to go dressed as a movie star or character. I went as the lady from Flashdance, one of my all time favourite films. But because I am hilarious/a douchebag, instead of wearing a leotard and leg warmers and being all sexy 80s dancer lady, I wore coveralls and a welder’s mask because that was Flashdance lady’s day job. Suffice to say I learned a valuable life lesson that night that I shall now pass on to you:
Don’t wear a welder’s mask to a party. You will not see the brick holding the red carpet down and you will break your toe and be forced to spend the entire night sitting in a corner with an ice pack on your foot watching your drunk colleagues grope each other when their partners aren’t looking. And no one should have to go through that.
I’ve never had a bad Christmas party but someone told me about this one where everyone working on this one project really hated each other or w/e. Like, HATED hated. There might have been some bad racial shit or something. Anyway, they all had to work Christmas day and they decided to have a soccer game. So they all went to this super trashy field, with, like, barbed wire and bullet casings everywhere, and played soccer and it was so terrible that at the end they all literally climbed into these holes in the ground – like, LITERAL holes – and shot at each other until they died. This was in 1915 or something. The. Worst.
Once, I had a boss who looked exactly like the devil. Seriously: black goatee, red eyes, hooves in desperate need of a pedicure; the whole bit.
Not only did this chap suffer from both congenital evil and a dependence on, ahem, Peruvian botanicals, but I suspect he may have had a death wish as he is the only person to ever have sexually harassed me with any degree of commitment. What a dick.
It always got worse at the Christmas party. “I’d like to see you in a bikini,’ he said after one cock-sucking cowboy. (This was the nineties.) After two, he asked me, “Are you blond Down There?”
“I had a dream of a sexual nature about you,” he said after seventy wine coolers.
Naturally, I lectured him and warned that if I heard that sort of nonsense again, I’d tell Human Resources his subconscious had sprayed on my tits.
I have no pleasant office Christmas party stories. They are all about quiet sexual desperation. This may explain why I now work at home.
Having spent most of my life as a freelancer up until this point, the majority of the Christmas parties I attended were other companies’ that I did occasional work for. That means that I always entered a bit on the out, because I knew, at best, one or two members of staff. Two years ago, frustrated at sitting in the corner nursing some cocktail I didn’t want, I decided to get really hammered and flirt outrageously with the only person at this particular Xmas party who’d said hello to me. As it so happens, we hit it off famously – at least that’s what I was told posthumously – and got very close to going home together until some guy I’d never met stepped in and told me to back off. He was the Managing Director; she was his fiancé. I didn’t drink again for the whole of summer.
For many years I worked in hospitality. It seemed a good way to pay the bills while I figured out exactly what I wanted to do with my life (yeah, a mistake). Of course, when you work in a restaurant the Christmas parties don’t take place anywhere near Christmas. Which means they tend to be all the bad stuff – the debauchery, the ruthless mining of bar tabs, the Lord of the Flies-style celebration of the strong and destruction of the weak – with none of that ‘tidings of good cheer and peace to all mankind’ bullshit. The most memorable involved a bowling green and a smorgasbord of booze, uppers and barbiturates. The twin themes for the day would turn out to be ‘just help yourself’ and ‘you can do that here’. The next day it transpired that someone had been arrested for possession, another had gone home with some dude and gotten herself deadlocked inside his house – he found her at five in the morning scratching at the door, trying to get out – and yet another had had a threesome with the staff at the bowling green. The best of times.
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