So Friday saw me face that dreaded of institutions, the office party. I never usually mind it, but this year I had the promise of a very early 5 hour train journey the next day and knew that there is a certain amount if medicinal drinking to do to get you through the pain of it all. So off I went, in some fairly glad rags, glad of the airing seeing as my social calendar is less full these days than of old, and faced the evening head on.
To be fair, it was really good. The venue was impressive seeing as it was a catered event in a venue I would not typically frequent for food. You could not argue with a single course. I had the chocolate cheesecake for dessert, and to be honest I would not usually order a chocolate with chocolate and a side order of sweet pudding, but I had no cheese board alternative so I ran with it. Could not eat all that, but that was the only quibble. My other quibble with the night is more rant than quibble. It’s that faux pas that is only made by young members of staff who organise these events, the invite your mates, let them impose on the night and seat them near you so you have no one to talk to faux pas. I don’t think it’s a big thing, but opening it up is a mistake. When I was asked to move so she could sit where I was sitting as she would like to sit by her friend, I felt the whole table bite their Tongue. Seriously, we all would like to move x or y person, or sit a little bit further down from a, b or c. But it’s a work do. Sacrifices are made. And you don’t even work with us! But still, I’m not embittered by it.
The most embarrassing moment was secret Santa. My gift was cracker shaped. And I began to uncurl the paper gingerly, as there is always a fear of the contents. I got penis pasta in porn wrapping paper one year. Thats always fun to show the catholic bosses. But this….. This was something else. I could feel it felt like magazines. My mind raced, I was thinking to myself please be Living Etc or the Jamie magazine….. Please. But I knew it. Someone had been in one of those seedy adult shops! Out fell Torso and Brit Lads. Brit Lads was a sport and shower special. I cringed. A lot. I didn’t know where to look, or if to close my eyes and not look again. And of course, the women around the table had had a drink, and were beyond curious, so were grabbing them from my coat and laughing, staring and displaying the contents to anyone who looked their way. So I then ran the risk of the lynching when identified as that pervert who brought e offending porn and whose friends flashed it everywhere! Nice one ladies!
I called it a night and returned home where I knocked together a fresh batch of brownies to take to Anne’s. Nice, moist, tacky and sweet, they were devoured as soon as the lid was removed from the Tupperware. Doing this drunk, however, was a hard task. I had to really remind myself of the stages, but it many ways I was quite focused, as previously I have been so distracted during such tasks that shortly before closing the oven door I realise I forgot the bloody chocolate! Yet this time, I was entirely successful. Go Adam.
Bedtime, then early rise. I realised then that I should not have had so many Amaretto and cokes. Bit squiffy around the edges, we got the cab to the station and headed down to Plymouth. My beloved iPad paid for itself this weekend, by doubling up as salvation. I hired a film about a gay Mormon falling in love with some slut of a guy, which in the true spirit of gay cinema was shit, and bought It’s A Wonderful Life. Which was truly as wonderful as everyone makes out. The entire thing takes you on a ride a man who sacrificed his dreams for others, which until the last reel makes you wonder where the sense in his dignity and loyalty has been, but the ending was just the most emotional thing I have ever seen. I think everyone should watch before Christmas Eve, and take the magic in. Loved it.
The films got me right to Plymouth. Literally It ended as I approached Marsh Mills. We jumped in a cab to Anne’s and awaited the arrival of Annie’s mate Mel (who is not a Grapefruit, who knew?!), and set off to town for beers. Well, more accurately, White wine. A bottle each. Before a party. Lots of wine. In hindsight, silly quantities. We met a friend’s new boyfriend. Now I believe you have to hold something back with new people. It’s like a concert, don’t chuck all the magic into song number one, let your set build. And if you are a new boyfriend, don’t be controversial in the opening statement. And don’t slag off other members of the friendship group. And don’t be serious and stiff on a Saturday with people who are having a Christmas party. Let’s just say the jury is out, but the feeling amongst the advocates is that the prosecution presented their case very well.
Party time came. Booze came. It was a veritable cornucopia of people at the party. A man from Sheffield who quizzed us on whether we had ever been to what seemed like every pub in Sheffield. In the end I kept saying yes. Who knows maybe I have been in The Sheaf, The Tap, The Barrel. I even said I knew Dougie. I don’t bloody know who Dougie is, but it was easier to say yes. And it’s always best followed by “everyone knows him, he’s such a character”. One day this theory may fall flat but it served me well Saturday. I also enjoyed the woman who talked to cats all evening, turned up to a party in a stained tracksuit, walked like a marionette puppet and slurred from the moment she arrived. Her hair resembled the hairstyle featured on Jon Pertwee as Wurzel Gummidge, dyed black. In fact that’s not fair, I think Wurzel’s was less dry than this mass of hair. Bizarre. As the night went on, I got more drunk, Pete passed out in bed, Mel passed out, Anne and I danced to Firework by Katy Perry and sang what probably resembled whale song as we realised we knew none of the words but liked it.
Sunday morning was a horrible realisation that we were awake, against our better judgement! I ran to the spar for bread, bacon and the News of the World, and had to clear the stragglers out the front room so we could watch the X Factor. I had to resort to throwing items on the floor by the front room to rouse them. Converse trainers were thrown across the hall, then I ran to the kitchen and pretended to wash up. It was the adulthood, party aftermath version of knock door run. Once the living room was free and the half drank cans of lager were cleared away and cups rinsed and tea poured, it was toast, telly and sore head time. Bizarrely, in spite of cake being displayed and brownies distributed, the monstrous folk actually ate Anne’s advent calendar chocolates. Who does that? Animals. They also put presents and cat toys in the hearth of the fire. If anyone knows who did that, please don’t invite them to any further soiree, not cool.
Now X Factor dominated this weekend. It was interminable. Four hours. Random Take That. Christina Aguilera’s weight gain and dull performance. Rihanna’s dress with it’s above groin split. Rihanna’s fringed knickers. The exit of One Direction against my better judgement. The question of who is Gilligan and why had Matt got his eyes? Rebecca’s song sounding dreary, but I imagine will sound awesome if we hear a recorded version, Aiden Grimshaw being overly excited at the end and swearing, it was just painful. Dannii’s lack of tears surprised me. Perhaps she was too excited at how her style victory this serious has boosted sales at her Project D fashion label.
Monday has come, and after breakfast, Julie and Julia and a stroll across Plymouth to the station, we are on the train now. Will snooze then read the Observer Food Monthly, followed by more snoozing I imagine. No wifi at chez shears meant that I couldn’t download another movie, but hey ho. And that is about all you needed to update you. Apologies about the blog slowdown. But hope that you can realise there has been much living, to ensure successful blogging. What could be more worthwhile than that!
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