Thursday, January 31, 2013

Christmas Spirit (Clause 29.6)

Last few weeks, I’ve been reflecting on my adventures over Christmas, and is it just me or does being around work during the Christmas season make you feel a little like a hooker? It's all 'hey, I know we've only ever conversed professionally, but since it's Christmas and, you know, we pay you, can you eat with me and buy me a gift.' Ugh! There are two flavours of Christmas spirit: the real and the fake. I like the taste of the real, but unfortunately workplaces only tend to serve the fake, and it tastes like shit!

My first job had a ripe staff of forty, but we weren’t so much staff as we were family, and all year round, no matter the season, the workplace kept up this family attitude. Any birthday or departure was just another way of announcing a party or some sort of social gathering either out somewhere or in the store after close. So come December, Christmas celebrations just felt...natural. Now here I am, four workplaces later and I'm yet to find another family environment like that first one. Instead, now there are people on the roster I never see because nobody ever organises anything and some are just segregated.

And that's all fine to me; some workplaces are just structured that way, especially the one I'm working in now, but you can't have your cake and eat it too. All I ask in return is that when December rolls around, please, please, please don't expect me to be excited when I'm required to pretend for two weeks that the workplace is a family environment when really it's just a big lie, especially when, for the preceding eleven months, everybody has walked around like social moths.

Christmas parties, Christmas Eve lunches and Secret Santa, yuck, yuck, yuck! Those things are certainly nice, no argument about that, but for what reason are they organised by management? Is it because they want to or because they feel obliged to? If you genuinely want to, then why for eleven months do zero social functions get organised? Where at the first job everything felt like it was just the customary swing of things to celebrate Christmas - an encouraged swing I might add - at these workplaces it all just feels a little forced and tacked on to me. That's the catalyst behind any eye-rolling that comes from me during Christmas. 'Well since it's Christmas, I'll break some bread with you this time, but after that, just…no'.

I love giving, but I just love not being a pawn in other people's denial more.

To build an attitude where it's all work and no play, keep business and pleasure separate, but then for a couple of weeks its nothing but out of the ordinary social outings and presents...yuck! It's all sex and no foreplay with these workplaces and I hate it. It's totally Jason Alexander and not at all Richard Gere.

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