The London Paper – 17 Dec 2007
Sometimes it feels like a hangover is for life, and not just for Christmas. December in the City – ’tis truly the season to be jolly … unwell. I have been eating Nurofen by the dozen for breakfast and can feel my distended intestine and liver becoming slowly more rotten with each passing day. I’m continually knackered; I’m spotty and I look and feel fit only for the undertaker. I just thank the big stockbroker in the sky that I’m off to Thailand in a few days and that I crossed the year’s final hurdle last week – the office Christmas party.
Last week’s shindig was always going to be a hazardous affair comprising various elements that together could prove potentially incendiary. First of all, the young lady I had dealings with a few weeks ago would be present (and invariably inebriated). Secondly, numerous senior executives with the bank would be amongst the 2000 or so ‘revellers’. Thirdly, the liquor was free. I had to be on best behaviour or I could ruin my already battered reputation.
Of course, I wasn’t and I did. What actually happened was that I sat around drinking champers like the bastard son of Ollie Reed and Peter O’Toole and then proceeded to make a complete and utter tit of myself. They say that one definition of insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results and that can only mean that I deserve to be chillaxing in the room with the rubber walls.
Soon after entering the vast City venue and picking up some Thai food from the buffet, I sat down at one of the tables with some colleagues. My first mistake was telling my boss’ boss that he couldn’t join our group having failed to recognise him. Unfortunately, I’m not so sure that he made the same mistake. Secondly, once ratted I danced to the cheesy house music like a fifteen year old raver on his first disco biscuit – though I suspect with significantly less rhythm. Finally, I made clumsy passes at my former squeeze that were not only unsuccessful but gave the game away to all the office gossip mongers that we had previously made the beast with two backs. What a total prick! The only good news is that I still have my job – which I suppose is a Brucie bonus after the performance I put in.
Frankly, the days of people like me in the City are numbered as the work-obsessed automatons take over. It’s a crying shame but the City is steadily becoming a duller place and my kind of behaviour will merely hasten my inevitable demise. I plan to do just one more year so that I can call it a day with my sanity and internal organs just about intact. Unfortunately for anyone’s credibility meter I’ve been spouting that crap for five years!
Anyway, all that it remains for me to do is to wish you all a season’s greetings and ask you to please remember, as I never do, to drink responsibly.