Friday 14 December 2018

Works Do - Bob Does

It's mid-December, it is okay to start thinking about getting festive. Thursday evening was the Departmental party, to which many people look forward with dread. What if I finish up seated next to the winner of The Most Boring Colleague prize? What are the chances that I'll food-poisoning? How likely is it that the DeptLush will spill his drink into my lap? Everyone will be dicing with those possibilities. Women will be alert for the roamin' hands of the DeptLothario? Silverbacks like me know that they won't be able to hear half the conversation because youngsters mumble and the music is always too loud. We also have to worry about forgetting whose mother died earlier in the year and whose boy-friend has more recently dumped her. This year it was okay.
  • I had an excuse for leaving after a couple of hours
  • I weasled some useful information about retirement from the MBC
  • nobody spilled anything into my lap
    •  nobody was sick ditto
  • the food [international tapas] was better than expected:
    • papas bravas; lamb tagine; falafel; hallomi in a bun; duck 'wings' with hoisin sauce; gambas & chorizo bake
    • you can't fool a tableful of biologists: "waiter, this wing is suspiciously like a femur"
I was at home by 9pm, €25 lighter in the pocket and looking for a small alcoholic bevvy and a hot water bottle before falling into bed.

Yesterday, Friday, was the last day of term. I had read all the Literature Reviews of my final year research project students . . . and given them a chunk of mostly positive feedback. All my exams were marked and I was up to date with the lab reports. I was only at The Institute because free food was on offer. Free Food was on the table because, by long tradition, the Christmas after folk retire from The Institute, they are invited back to be tribbed by their line-manager and presented with a clock by The President. With unaccountable generosity all employees are invited to dinner in case any of the recently-retired wants to catch up with colleagues, cleaners, porters or administrators.

Before that, again by long tradition, there is a bring-and-buy cake sale and raffle to raise funds for local charities intercalated with a Christmas sing song. As with much of modern Christmas tradition, it never rains but it pours. On top of a morning of doing justice to the home-baking crew - it would be unfair not to sample one of everything - we were expected to trencher through a mountainous plate of turkey-and-stuffing-and-ham-and-gravy-and-roasters-and-sprouts. I usually go for the vegetarian option because the queue is shorter; but this year I went trad . . . and followed it with mince-pies-and-brandy-custard.  Even with a damn good Kobayashi shake, I couldn't stop myself falling into a drooling sleep on the sofa as soon as I sat down at home.

No comments:

Post a Comment