Monday, December 4, 2006

Jingle Bells, now drink yourself retarded

Ah, corporate holiday parties. Is anything at once so awkward, fun and mockery-worthy? I daresay, no. I realize these parties are supposed to be a way for coworkers to all relax, let down their hair and have some fun. But, I always come out of these things feeling like I spent my Saturday night at work, only more exhausting because I have to make pleasant chit chat with coworkers and their spouses/partners. I’m all for second-hand embarrassment, but watching VERY drunk vice presidents grinding on their/other people’s dates is more than even I want to watch.

My only goal was to avoid having a new nickname due to the party (such as Spaz, MakeOut Machine or The Puker). I think I made it out ok. Luckily, I was smart and brought a flask with good whisky. This served two purposes: 1. Avoid paying $7 for a poorly made 3 oz. beverage and 2. Since I only had a limited supply, I barely achieved buzz. So no chance of drunken debauchery.

I mentioned to my sister how I was less than excited watching my drunken coworkers behaving in divorce-causing behavior, she called me a prude. “From what I’ve learned on sitcoms, corporate holiday parties are all about getting drunk and making out with coworkers,” she said. And can I just say, the greatest start to a sentence ever. “From what I’ve learned on sitcoms.” And as we all know, sitcoms are well known for showing the consequences of poor judgment.

Well, I just let that one go in the conversation, but it’s been bothering me. Am I a prude? Not in my private life. But I think this is the difference. I attempt to draw distinct lines between my work life and my home life. I don’t bring work home with me and I try not to bring my private life into the office. Yes, I’ve had a few work friends who have translated into just FRIENDS, but that takes a lot of time. Things that I wouldn’t think twice about doing with my friends, (such as stripping naked and doing a lap around the block for a drinking game) I would never do in front of coworkers. If for no other reason than, when promotion time comes around, I really don’t want my reviewer thinking about that time I got really drunk and made out with the VP of finance.

I’d like to think that doesn’t make me a prude. Just polite. I guess for my sister, any semblance of etiquette and good taste is really just uptight, prudish behavior. And if that’s the case, so be it.

And for another round of Movies Everyone Else Saw Months Ago, I give you Borat. You know, I actually liked this movie. I think all the buildup of how “offensive” this movie was had me expecting far worse. And yes, there was more unattractive man-nudity that was entirely necessary. But aside from that, I think mostly it made people uncomfortable because it allowed rank and file Americans to lampoon themselves. And I think it mocked things that needed to be mocked. Religions that take place in tents complete with “healings” and evangelical “America is always going to be a Christian nation” declarations (all while conveniently forgetting to love one another, and not judge, but maybe I just dislike religions and so am predisposed to mock) is allowed to be poked fun at. And a trashy rodeo-organizer commenting that they should round up all gays and hang them, really has my disdain coming. Drunken frat boys declaring that women are all bitches who don’t deserve any respect and all the non-white people have all the power in this country really deserve to be shown for what they are.
Mostly, I think it disturbed people because it was pretty honest in it’s portrayal of the rest of the US. And if you don’t think that’s true, it’s time to get out of California for a while and actually listen to Joe Bob the Missouri farmer.

Good lord, I’m on the soapbox today.

In other news, I’m old and my body is falling apart at an alarming rate. My shin splints are back and threatening to break my soul. I’ve officially forgotten how to walk without a limp. So, clearly I should keep running on asphalt 6 days a week. I’m smart. Sometimes…

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