Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Work and play

The combination of last weekend’s 3 way and my boss posting this year's holiday office photos today has really got me thinking about office parties, holiday and otherwise.

As I've mentioned before, I've worked for the same company forevah. This job has seen me through three name changes (more accurately, two name changes, three names in total), the purchase of houses and condos, and the birth of three babies. Hell, I've grown up here. And consequently, I've been party to many-a MedLink party.

After viewing this year's office party photos, I took some time out to view previous years' shenanigans. We've had some fun. Lots, really. And we've got photos to prove it. And, as I'm feeling Ellie-esque, you're going to see some of these photos.

It used to be, back in the day, when we were a wee bit larger and our star was on the rise and Dan the was still the boss man, that we had both a holiday party in December and some other outing in the summer.

But what I came to realize today was that no matter the party -- holiday, summer, or other -- we compete. Our play always tends to have a competitive edge. Obviously, if it took me this long to realize this fact, it's not always that pronounced (or perhaps I've been too wrecked to notice?). No, it's sometimes subtle, and in truth, last year's holiday party was an exception. We did not compete or wager on anything, except at guessing our secret santas, and it was one of the lamest office parties we've had.

After having this competitive-play epiphany, I tried to look for work events that did not have some kind of game involved.

I thought the time we all flew up to San Francisco for the Codie Awards was strictly non-competitive, but then I remembered that the only reason MedLink flew us up there was to see if we WON the award. We wanted to win so badly, and to be witness to that win, that we all attended this black-tie event. (Sadly, we did not win.)

don't I look like a wee lass?

I happened upon these goofy photos of a summer party held at the CEO's house and thought, Aha!, we did not play any games at this event, we were just goofy:

But, alas, we did. We played badminton. Badly. And also tried to out do each other's bouncy maneuvers on the in-ground trampoline.

Well, what about at our long-ago luau?

Foiled again. All we did is drink, eat, and play games. We participated in Survivor-like activities, which involved doing embarrassing things.

We also held a very serious sand sculpture contest, involving three teams attempting to create the best-est sand sculpture (duh).

okay, so I'm a little bossy

What about our epic limo trip to the wine country?

Nope. In addition to, or more aptly, all during the day's numerous tasters and full glasses, we were split into teams and working hard to fulfill ridiculous requirements like getting a stranger to sing a Christmas carol, snapping a photograph of a hot air balloon, and procuring the phone number of a waiter or waitresses.

We were also penalized for calling each other anything but the reindeer names that were assigned to us in the limo on the way up, and we had bags of candy to be used as currency and were forced to give away a piece each time we forgot. (And of course who ever had the most candy at the end of the day won a prize.)

see our silly little bags?

The year before last our holiday party involved having appetizers at one restaruant, then a gourment lunch at a local San Diego landmark restaruant,

don't worry, I'm not holding a drink because I already finished mine

then dessert at one of those decadent dessert bars. Not very competitive, right? Wrong. We ended the day at one of those very obnoxious, adult Chuck E Cheese-like venues.

This year we just went straight for the game, no hiding our competive natures.

This is my personally selected, 8-lb ball, the perfect heft for my unique set of bowling skills, so watch out!

And although it may appear that T is joking around with Ben, he's actually trying to get into his head!

I'm thinking next year we should just go for it......mud wrestling.

But let me know if you have a better idea.


Anonymous said...

Your parties look way fun!
Great blog, Beth.

Me, You, or Ellie said...

Those DO look like fun parties! Do they foot the whole bill? I really like your pink floral capris, too :)


Me, You, or Ellie said...

Yes, MedLink foots the bill. One year we were each even handed a $20before heading into the Padres game (yes, another game) to spend inside on beers and whatnot. (And I do believe that this was the year that one employee was taken away in the paddy wagon! He definitely lost the I-can-hold-my-liquor game that day.)


Debbie said...

I'm a competitive person by nature. It can be a very bad thing!
And yes your parties do look fun.

Me, You, or Ellie said...

Beth! This is so great! I can't believe the fun and frivolity. You and Bryan are the long-termers, huh? So good to see everybody. I really wish, though, that you had photos of the Padres game (you got handed a $20?! Really?!) That really would have completed the San Diego tour for me.

I love, btw, the detes of the wine country trip. What a rager.

Great post!