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EDITIONS
 Tuesday, 24 December, 2002, 15:29 GMT
Tell us your Christmas office party stories
This year's Christmas parties could cost British businesses more than £66 million, according to a report issued by Norwich Union Healthcare.

The "Hangover Bill" says that a quarter of workers will go to at least one work-related party this Christmas, with one in five attending two, and 11% going to five or more.

More than a million workers have taken time off in the past due to over indulgence at their Christmas do.

Meanwhile many firms, such as those in the city, who are experiencing cutbacks have cancelled their festivities for this year.

What is the best and worst Christmas party that you've attended? Is your firm still having a Christmas bash? Tell us your stories using the form below.

Talking Point was suggested by Lisa, Canada:

To keep things light, please do "Christmas office party stories" again. It made me laugh every day when I was feeling blue.

Thank you for your e-mails. This Talking Point is now closed. A selection of your comments is published below.

I'm assistant manager at a bank in Hampshire. Last year our party ended for me getting kicked and punched by some of the 'tellers' who work under me. Our working relationship was never brilliant, and I thought if I bought a few rounds of drinks wounds would heal. But the evening turned from mirth and merriment into violence. I was amazed at the viciousness middle aged ladies are capable of. I was kneed in the solar plexus, my glasses knocked off and crushed, and when I was lying on the ground I was kicked like a sack of potatoes. The worst thing was that my boss said I deserved it and refused to acknowledge the incident when I brought it up in our weekly meeting in the New Year, even though I had both arms and one leg still in plaster and hadn't taken a single day off work. There will be no more Christmas parties for me.
Derek, UK

Last year at my Xmas party, after a few too many drinks I was having a chat in the toilets with a lady in the next department. We started whinging about men, as you do. I started talking about the married man I was seeing. It became clear the next morning the person I was talking to was the wife of the man I was seeing. Needless to say I have avioded her for the past year, and I am now free and single!!!
Gemma, Bexleyheath, UK

It involved fighting with cucumbers, photocopying the obvious and herding a cow into reception

Lizzie, Bexleyheath, UK
The best Christmas staff party I ever went to was when I was 17 and I worked in a hotel. Everything in the bar was 50p and the whole night was a riot, we basically took over the whole hotel as it was only small, it involved fighting with cucumbers in the kitchen, photocopying the obvious in the office and herding a cow into reception... after that my office parties now just don't compare!!!
Lizzie, Bexleyheath, UK

Hmmm... from your comments anyone would think that England was a land of drunkards, who have class distinctions even among co-workers at a local low level business that have no idea what's going on but will be the last to admit it... (sounds about right to me!)
Nigel, US and UK

The one I got sacked after
Michael "No further comment", UK

The most delightful Christmas party I ever attended was a few years ago in a little run-down out-of-the-way place in Virginia. There were five or six guys with guitars belting out country songs with a little rock thrown in. Although there wasn't alcohol, we were all having a ball. After a couple of hours somebody started passing around some delicious smelling cigarettes and not being wise to the situation, I took one. Within minutes I was having the time of my life! Everything was hilarious, particularly the guy who paused in front of me and said conspiratorially, "See that guy over there? He's about 99% illegible." The only "hangover" I had was sore ribs from laughing long and hard. I would love a few more of those parties!
Mary, USA

In the company party we use to break piñatas, this time the rope gave in and the hard piñata fell in the head of my secretary....she's out for a month and I'm stuck with the bill... happy Xmas to me.
Carlos, Mexico

Damn right, get out and enjoy yourself. I've been invited to a party slap bang in between Xmas and New Year, free ticket and some free drinks, just by being a member of a club. And when I go out and enjoy it, it's back with the family for New Year. Then I can get on with applying for the best three jobs to turn up since my redundancy in May. Already I'm seeing the benefits of not having to go to either of the Xmas parties with a bunch of scheming, plotting, backstabbing fakes, but will meet friends and new people alike.
Flynn, England

They drove us all to our ATMs and forced us to withdraw the maximum allowed

Harry, UK
I went out with the lads from the office. We met up with a group of Gypsies who took us back to their camp (in a field about a mile from our office) and after plying us with booze for several hours, they drove us all to our ATMs, forced us to withdraw the maximum allowed, took all the money and our clothes (except for our shorts) and left us standing in the rain out in the middle of nowhere. We couldn't get anyone to stop for us, so we had to walk back into town and call the police. One of the lads vomited in the back of the patrol car, another one did the same in the front seat. They threw us out of the car and we all walked home. A very memorable evening indeed!
Harry, UK

We ended up doing karaoke in a church hall, singing badly and having our photographs taken in the process. The evidence has been posted on the office intranet - but I feel vindicated as the directors dressed up in Flares and wigs and sang Abba songs to a stunned crowd of employees, who were watching and thinking "I'm sure I haven't drunk THAT much" Merry Christmas!
Sarah

I didn't attend mine. I went home and went out partying with my real friends instead.
Andrew, UK

As a mobile DJ, I am now on my 12th party with three more to go. All I can say is that I wish people were like this all year round 'cause I have a right giggle getting people to do 'Star Trekkin'', Superman etc. A party last weekend was for the Local Police Station (one near a large castle that almost burned down 10 years ago). The tack that they had for getting me to play records was 'either play the record or get a parking ticket, or we can have you arrested and left in the cells over Christmas. Merry Christmas!
Dominic Hill, UK

Being refugees in Kenya, we have forgotten about our Christmas party that we use to have at home. For us Xmas is just like any ordinary day's holidays. It is however very painful to see this change in our life.
Victor Tombe Lako, Sudan

Do the British businesses that suffer include the brewers and distillers?
Alex, Britain

The next day we all turned up for work bruised and battered with broken noses

AL, UK
I was working for a small company in a warehouse and went to their Xmas party at a posh hotel. The office staff and warehouse staff didn't really mix and it was like there was this 'them' and 'us' attitude hanging in the air. Towards the end of the night I ended up getting my nose broken having being head butted by one of the guys I worked with just for saying goodnight. As I went down to the floor, 2 other guys I worked with started on the guy who'd assaulted me and his mate. The next day we all turned up for work bruised and battered with broken noses. Since then I've tried to avoid office Xmas parties in case it breaks out into a riot!
AL, UK

Why have all the miserable folk signed 'Anon'?
Jenny, England

Well after a booking at a restaurant in Bristol we turned up to find the doors locked. It took about 4 holes and 12 claw marks in the door for them to realise why no customers had gone in so far that night.
Sergio, UK

To Lindsey, UK, Sarah, et al: What makes you think: a) we anons can't enjoy ourselves? b) we need alcohol to do it? You can still have a really good time without it, and even photocopy your bum and/or boobs if you want! And the best bit is not having that mega-hangover the next day, so we can go back and party all over again! We aren't all sad people who don't like pleasure, just don't see the point of throwing up in the course of it!
Anon, UK

I'd just like to tell the (few) miserable people on this board to lighten up; the "true meaning of Christmas" since pagan times has been to have some fun to cheer us up in mid-winter. Whether it's the carol service or the drunken snog in the stationary cupboard, never let anyone make you feel bad about enjoying yourselves - have a great time all of you, you've earned it!
John, UK

I work in a library and the staff here had arranged to go out on a particular evening. When the evening arrived - no one could be bothered to turn up! And then the next morning at work, no one even remarked upon it! Fantastic bunch. Naturally, I'm clearing off, but I shall miss them all like a foot misses a Veruca...
Paul, UK

I went to the office party and got that drunk woke up next to my hairy boss! He was hugging me nibbling my ear
Chris White, Bedworth

My lawyer says I shouldn't talk about last year's Christmas party, but honest, I thought that stuff was mistletoe.
Anon, Rhode Island, USA

Being refugees in Kenya, we have forgotten about our Xmas party that we use to have at home. For us Xmas is just like any ordinary day's holidays. It is however very painful to see this change in our life.
Victor Tombe Lako, Sudan

A secretary and myself got ourselves chucked out of a bar by a bunch of bouncers after being falsely accused of copulating with each other in the toilets. Even though I was not the lucky man, we did manage to continue drinking and partying until 5am, get chucked out of two clubs and gatecrash two other parties.
Simon, UK

Our Christmas party went down with a big splash as one of the workers fell in the duck pond outside the venue!
Michael, UK

I'm a young bloke in an office of 25 forty something men who aren't normally allowed out in the evening's by their wives. This means the entire event is basically drunk men who can't handle their drink talking about golf handicaps, divorce or medical ailments. God, I feel depressed talking about it now!
D. Lewis, England

As a mobile DJ, I have a right giggle getting people to do 'Star Trekkin', Superman etc etc....A party last weekend was for the Local Police Station. The tack that they had for getting me to play records was "either play the record or get a parking ticket, or we can have you arrested and left in the cells over Christmas". Merry Christmas!
Dominic Hill, UK

I now see why they are so legendary

Dave G, UK

I never go to the Xmas parties at my office as they are singularly the most desperately sad and depressing events. I'm a young bloke in an office of 25 forty something men who are aren't normally allowed out in the evening's by their wives. This means the entire event is basically drunk men who can't handle their drink talking about golf handicaps, divorce or medical ailments. God, I feel depressed talking about it now!
D.Lewis, England

Our Christmas party went down with a big splash as one of the workers fell in the duck pond outside the venue !
Michael, UK

After 15 years offshore I now work on shore and went to my first ever office Christmas party. I now see why they are so legendary. Did the works - got steamed and ended up with a colleague. Rotten hangover, but at least it caused a bit of gossip for a few days !
Dave G, UK

In a previous job, attendance at the Christmas party was compulsory as was getting drunk to the point of unconsciousness. Although by no means a teetotaller, this wasn't for me so I left halfway through. In the new year I was hauled in front of the MD to be told that my behaviour at the party "had been noticed", and that I wasn't a team player. Not long after this I was sacked. There's nothing wrong with a Christmas social event, it can improve working relationships, but employees and employers too often take things way too far.
Michael Thompson, England

To all those who have no Christmas spirit there are people on this board who are telling great tales of letting off a bit of steam after hectic years of working hard. Don't condemn them for that. If they overindulge, run down corridors, fall over, have a moment of any kind and consequently have to slink into the office for the next week or so - so be it.
Mel, London

My highlight has to be a fancy dress Christmas party with hotel accommodation thrown in - absolutely fab until my boyfriend went to bed early v. drunk and managed to lock me out of the room. No amount of banging on the door could rouse him, so a sympathetic colleague donated me his room and I had the embarrassment of running back to my room in the morning, still in my medieval lady costume! They don't do them like that anymore!
Karen, UK

To Anon and the other miserable folk out there. The reason that people turn to drinking at Christmas parties is mainly due to the fact that many of us find people with attitudes like yours insufferable and get stupidly drunk in the hope that you leave early. On a personal note I cannot remember much of my Christmas party - I got stupidly drunk - that is a reflection on the people I have to work with!
Gordon Sinclair, England

Just goes to prove that you don't have to be drunk to make a fool of yourself

Helen, England
I fell down some stairs at my Xmas party at 7.30 in the evening! Just goes to prove that you don't have to be drunk to make a fool of yourself. I stayed to enjoy the free drink and went casualty the next morning to be told I had gone the whole night with a broken thumb!! Now that's stamina!
Helen, England

I agree with the other Anon - why does it take copious amounts of alcohol for people to seemingly have fun (being sick and having a hangover is not fun in my book). I don't drink and still can have loads of fun. There must be something lacking in people's lives if they can only have a good time once hammered. Good times can be had without drink, obviously most people have such sad lives they need the alcohol stimulus to liven it up.
Anon, UK

You should enjoy life

Lindsey, UK
Slightly off course here but I now believe you should live every day as if it's your last as you never know what's around the corner. One of my friends aged 25 died earlier this year and it made me realise that you should enjoy life and not put things off until tomorrow to make way for menial things like work. To Alex Liang and all the other bah humbug people, enjoy yourself at least once a year, you might not be here to enjoy the next one!!!
Lindsey, UK

I ended up belly-dancing, despite being sober (as usual). Thankfully my boss had already gone home and no cameras were present! Still, it's good to get out of the office and have some fun with your friends - without getting wasted and/or getting off with a random someone.
Heather, UK, UK

Sad to see how many people here seem to equate having a fun time with getting stupidly drunk. No wonder the British have such a poor reputation abroad as out-of-control alcoholics.
Steve S, UK

I have a story about the "worst" Christmas party. I rsvp'd that I would attend the Company's Christmas party being held on a Saturday night. At the last minute I was unable to go. The following Monday, I was continually greeted by co-workers who said I had won the Grand Drawing prize which was free airfare and hotel for a trip to Cancun, Mexico. However, because I was not physically in attendance, the prize was redrawn and awarded to someone else who was at the party. That happened at least 10 years ago and I still can't forgive myself.
Kathryn, USA

The whole thing gives me a headache

John, England
Speaking as an employer (a breed much reviled in this forum) Christmas parties are a no-win situation. Suggest something flash, and you're accused of wasting money. Go for something more modest, and you're tight fisted! Try anything without loads of alcohol and all the under 30s say it's boring. Anything with loads of alcohol, and the over 35s say they're excluded. Whatever date you choose, you get pilloried by the people who can't make that day. The whole thing gives me a headache.
John, England

Best office Christmas party ever? The one where I was totally incapacitated and was pushed home in my own chauffeur driven shopping trolley!
Mark, UK

Alex Liang and Anon, UK should get together for their own fun-free Christmas party. Lighten up folks.
Sarah, UK

Anon, judging by your numerous and hilarious exploits, you don't half get around. Leave some fun for the rest of us you scally!
Gerry, UK

Several years ago, the boss allowed a raffle of various bottles of spirits on the morning of the Christmas bash, with the money raised going to charity. The only condition was that the bottles couldn't be opened until noon... an instruction that was promptly 'forgotten' by 930am. By 11am people were fairly hammered and dancing on the tables in the reception area. A few people were too drunk to make the Christmas lunch at 1pm, even fewer managed to stay until the evening bash.... and an unfortunate 3 people ended up in hospital the next day with alcohol poisoning.
Andy, UK

It was on this festive night that we met each other

Adam & Andrew EU law students, UK
Our last Christmas party was a hoot. Our department in uni decided to have a small get-together as an informal way of getting to know others within the department. It was on this festive night that we met each other. We had spied each other often over a steaming cup of Bovril in the student canteen, and sometimes if feeling frivolous in the Student Union whilst supping a snakebite and black. Our surreptitious glances finally came into fruition with a stolen kiss under the mistletoe whilst Slade bellowed out a Christmas tune in the background. It'll be our first anniversary this Saturday and we are planning on returning to Amsterdam in the New Year where we declared our love to each other by way of our blessing.
Adam & Andrew EU law students, UK

The best Christmas party I ever went to was when I was in the RAF. We turned up at a pub to find that our squadron were sharing the venue with a party of girls from a well known department store. Needless to say, we all immediately got on together, got absolutely trollied, and the first thing I did when I woke up was roll over and introduce myself to the person who is now my wife! Quality!!!!!
Simon S, UK

This country culture is quickly disintegrating. All they can muster is anecdotes of drunkenness and whom they got off with. Think about it. Their idea of a good time is getting drunk as much as possible, being sick, a bit of how's your father if possible and then claiming selective amnesia. Sign of the times and lack of imagination I guess. What happened to the real meaning of Christmas?
Anon, UK

I had the party of my life

Derick, UK
I am self-employed as a van driver and this year's Christmas party was one to remember. I started the morning with my usual round of deliveries and then at lunchtime drove to a service station and bought myself a turkey and cranberry sandwich, a pack of individual mince pies and a "Hits of Christmas" music cassette. I had the party of my life and it was great for my morale.
Derick, UK

Our bosses paid for a weekend in a stately home in North Wales. The theme was 'Back to School', and involved drinking lots of cider and eating 80s tuck-shop sweets. Injuries in our 10-strong party on the Monday morning included a sprained hand, sprained ankle, bruised knee and sore hips - all the result of over-enthusiastic hula-hooping and space-hopper racing along the corridors - whilst we were dressed in the obligatory school uniform, of course. An excellent weekend!
Liz, Manchester, UK

Well I'm the boss of a paper merchants in Slough, and basically because I'm a chilled out entertainer, we don't need a Christmas party as such. I just have beers in the office and a seminar about Motivation, so we are ready for the year ahead!
David Brent, UK (so he says)

Our works night Out ending with the police being called because a member of staff bottled another member of staff. As a result, employee involved resigned and is being charged.
Shona, UK

Well I have just been given a 5% pay cut for Christmas (and as for a party? You must be joking!). I hope Santa Claus takes a shovel to the reindeer stables to fill our CEO's Xmas stocking!
Gary, UK

It's people like this who make a company great

Geni, UK
I work in the UK office of a large American company. After cancelling our Xmas party, our American CEO then sent out an e-mail saying that any European employee who happened to be in the US this week was welcome to come to the American Xmas party! Our boss then promptly put his hand in his pocket and is treating myself and 11 colleagues to a pub lunch and an afternoon of beers (although he doesn't know we'll contribute to the beer bill). It's people like this who make a company great and who embody the spirit of Xmas. Cheers!
Geni, UK

This morning we had Christmas celebration in our English Department at the Kigali Institute of Science, Technology and Management, Kigali, Rwanda. One of the staff, Ann Holmes, who is Swedish, brought some cakes she had prepared and Swedish buns and shared them with all the staff on the department. We sang a few Christmas numbers and celebrated in a wonderful way. It brought us together and made us realise the true meaning of Christmas: sharing. There is always joy in sharing.
Albert P'Rayan, Indian expat in Rwanda

The dinner descended into a food fight of epic proportions

Anon, UK
Our company used to make the big mistake of allowing employees to start drinking in the site bar at about 4.30 in the afternoon on the day of the Christmas bash. The food was never very good and on this one particular year the staff decided to raise the matter with the caterers. The dinner descended into a food fight of epic proportions, involving senior management. Roast potatoes, handfuls of stuffing and rock hard sprouts flew through the air with deadly velocity. The catering staff could only look on horrified. They didn't know who to complain to as most of the management were involved!
Anon, UK

I used to arrange the Christmas parties at a former company. There was always a story to tell and they generally became company legends. Many revolved around the social club secretary who was always drunk. One year she arranged for her son to drive the coach that took everyone to and from the hotel that we had hired. He was later found sleeping off his hangover in the back of the coach and she was found by her husband in bed with the lodger.
Philip, USA

We had a great Xmas do in Harrogate which the company paid for: I was totally drunk and everyone got to let their hair down and have a really good time. I feel it shows that the company cares about us and it builds good team spirit.
Peter Carr, UK

A little forgive and forget wouldn't go amiss

Becky, Southampton, UK
Last year our company arranged the usual sort of party at a hotel in town. Unfortunately several members of staff behaved very immaturely and damaged the property resulting in the whole company being banned from the hotel chain. This year management announced that there would be no party, no freebies and no bonus. We all find this very unfair as the persons involved have since left the company anyway, so why should we suffer as a result of their behaviour? A little forgive and forget wouldn't go amiss instead of this scrooge-like attitude.
Becky, Southampton, UK

A few years ago, my work threw a huge party at a hotel with a three-course meal, the works! Being only 16 I overindulged to say the least, throwing up all over the dancefloor, in the corner of the room and in the bushes outside the hotel. Even better, I managed to confess undying love to the ugliest colleague I have ever had to work with. Monday morning at work was fun.
Anon, UK

The funniest experience was a Christmas social a couple of years ago. It was a free bar and then off for a curry. Nothing flash - until one of the guys decides to remove his trousers in a packed restaurant. Then, a colleague's girlfriend with an adeptness that astonished many partygoers (and made a few of the guys extremely jealous of the boyfriend) removed the underwear of the trouserless gent in one swift movement. He then proceeded to run around the restaurant looking for his (now hidden) underpants covering his modesty with a rapidly crumbling poppodum! Well, you have to let your hair down at least once a year, but not your trousers! We all work very hard for our companies and the least they can do is arrange for all of us to celebrate for one evening of the year!
Steve Godrich, UK

We'll have our party on January 15th! Why? Because they are too tight to pay before Christmas. So when everyone is on the wagon and trying to lose their Christmas spare tires, we have to do it again!
Anon, England

I work for the civil service in Scotland, and we will be having our Christmas bash this week. The tax payer will be subsidising it and all of the booze. Sukkas!!
Anon, Scotland

We had our Christmas Party last Friday. It lasted from 3pm until 5pm and involved two bottles of beer and the announcement that 90 people will be losing their jobs. Fantastic.
Ian, UK

I run my own business and there is just one employee - me. This year, like last year, despite a good working stationery cupboard and working photocopier I didn't arrange a Christmas party and consequently have no funny anecdotes to tell.
Tim, UK

Our company Christmas party is this Friday. We already have hotel rooms reserved for the night. So it should be a great "free for all."
Dean, USA

My Christmas party was held at a Moroccan restaurant. During some point in the evening I was persuaded to dance with the resident belly dancer in front of the whole company (much to my chagrin). Later in the evening and a few drinks on, the CEO of my company complemented me on my dancing style. "I danced well?" I replied, "I danced so well I even turned myself on out there!". I am not fully sure what I meant by that, but luckily it never got back to me.
Brandon, USA

It's a good time to have a go at those people in your work that you just can't put up with. Then blame it on the alcohol the following Monday and everything is OK.
Anon, Scotland

An out of control lamp post came from nowhere

Simon, UK
Picture the scene of my mate and I (both well oiled), holding up his paralytic girlfriend on the way home. Needless to say, an out of control lamp post came from nowhere - we split but the girlfriend didn't make it, and went down like a sack of spuds. The next day she had two black eyes and strangely none of us could remember how she got them!
Simon, UK

Last Christmas I ended up getting the sack after getting the head of sales to bare her assets while I bared mine in the ladies toilet (after encouraging photos to be taken of us using the bosses camera!!) It was worth it - I hated the job anyway!
Brian, UK

People who waste company's time by missing work on accounts of hangovers don't deserve to keep their jobs. I missed my company's Christmas party because I was out at a networking event. Call me what you like, but if I get paid to take my work seriously, I don't see why others should be paid to behave like irresponsible alcoholics.
Alex Liang, London UK

Alex Liang should lighten up. I don't drink myself, but I don't think that makes it OK to judge other people. Working while everyone else is at a party is a sign of a lack of balance in your life. Everyone needs a break sometimes and an office Christmas party helps everyone relax a little and if the company pays it helps the staff to feel valued.
Lisa, UK

My company, a small business employing some 35 people in the UK gave us £5,000 plus hotels. We had a "Bond night" and it was fantastic. I had the following day off work, but came to work two days later feeling that I really want to help my company survive the current downturn... total commitment and loyalty, not bad for ?5,000 I'd say. By the way, they're paying us a small bonus because the directors decided not to take their ones. That's how to run a company!!
Paul H, UK

Our company paid for a Christmas party in the local pub. Plenty of booze, one illicit office encounter, one fight, one visit from the local bobbies, two hours waiting for taxis, three people resorting to sleeping on the floor in the office. All in all - excellent, roll on Xmas 2003.
Anon, UK

One of the guys showed up as a woman

Michael, US
One of the wildest events occurred a few years ago in New York when one of the guys in our office showed up dressed as a woman. It was a bit shocking. He "came out" to us that night and asked us to accept him that way. Everybody rose to the challenge and we were all having fun by the end of the evening. The really strange part was that he arrived at work the next day as a guy - needless to say he was a little confused.
Michael, US

I ended up drinking too much and went into a room off the hall to rest, and was awoken to find my boss and her assistant using the other side of the cupboard I was resting against. Unfortunately they saw me exit when I had thought the coast was clear. The next few weeks could be described as tense. Five years later we can laugh about it.
David Forster, Switzerland

Two Christmases ago I got absolutely trollied, and got to bed at about 3am. I got up at 8:30 (having forgotten to set the alarm), ran the three miles to work (as I was still too drunk to drive) only to find it was a Saturday and the office was closed!
Steve, Wales

I went to a Christmas do for the place I've just left. It cost ?7 and no free bar but someone took their gorgeous 17-year-old cousin and she decided I was her snog for the night, so I was happy!
Joseph, England

A fellow who got fired showed up with an axe

Glenn Knowles, USA
We had an informal get-together at one of our employee's house. We all contributed different foods and beverages and had a pretty good time, until a fellow who got fired a few weeks ago showed up with an axe and tried to get into the house. After the police came, he said he was just joking. The highlight of the evening was when a couple of the merrymakers were caught having sex in the garage. It was the best Christmas party I ever attended.
Glenn Knowles, USA

There was certainly no indulgence at our Christmas party! The boss had his wife make us lunch at their home.
Heather Clark, US

We are getting a two-hour lunch time 'soiree', for which we have to pay ?4. Whoopee. Any jobs going at Steve T's place? (More to the point, you're no relation of David Brent, eh Steve?)
Anon, UK

The party will make us all feel better

Steve T, England
Like many in the manufacturing sector, our company has had a very difficult 18 months, with the next 6-12 months looking likely to grow, but only barely. We have had to make cutbacks, but when the staff suggested we cancel the company party I told them emphatically "NO!" Why? Because not only do my staff deserve a party, so do I! The party will make us all feel better, and be a boost to morale.
Steve T, England

Our Christmas party consists of a two-hour lunch break and we have to be back on time and in a fit state to work. Ebenezer is alive and well in the 21st century. Well done for a year's hard work.
Bob, England

After going to the Christmas party one year I decided to meet up with a few mates who were going to their college dance. Having a spare ticket they asked me to go. I went and finally got home at 6 o'clock in the morning, was up by 7 and in work by 8. As I had taken it easy at the works party everyone was very surprised to see me stagger in still smelling of alcohol and staggering a bit. I finally sat down and a colleague put a bacon sandwich in front of me. Needless to say I threw up all over my computer and the sandwich. They now give me priority when booking the day after works functions off. What they don't know won't hurt them!
Anon, Wales

Christmas bashes should certainly not be scrapped

Laura, UK
Our department paid for a meal in the Hilton in London. Everyone got a little tipsy (to say the least) and we got to meet Alex Ferguson. Christmas bashes should certainly not be scrapped. They are a great way to bond with colleagues.
Laura, UK

After my department's Christmas party (on a Thursday night) I didn't make it into work until lunchtime on Friday. It wasn't a problem though - the company had paid for me to drink a lot, and I didn't leave until nearly 8pm that evening. I think that as long as people don't take advantage it doesn't really matter if you lose a bit of time - it is Christmas after all!
John B, UK

I can't tell you any stories, because our company has cancelled Christmas parties for the second year running. Strangely, it still has enough money to pay the CEO a $55million bonus. Funny, that!
Steve, UK

See also:

13 Dec 02 | Health
16 Dec 02 | Business
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