22 December 2007

Ssshh Secret Santa

"Once the email has been received there is no getting out of participating. It is very much compulsory participation by peer pressure!....I, for one, always break out into a cold sweat when my hand reaches into the hat for that folded piece of paper"

December is the time of year when office workers are faced with a serious challenge. Normally, it can lead to higher stress levels, and even major arguments. You see, it's all to do with a particular December deadline. You know which one I am on about - the Secret Santa (or Kris Kringle) present giving occasion!

In all honesty any work related, or year end deadlines, take second, or even third priority, when it comes to Secret Santa! For the uninitiated out there in Blogland, Secret Santa is where an office worker pulls a name of a co-worker out of a hat and then has to buy them a present up to a certain value. The 'Secret' part comes into it as you are not supposed to reveal who you have bought a present for.

What normally happens is that some bright spark in the office will wake up one November morning, put milk on his or her corn flakes and think to themselves "hmm. I'd better organise the Secret Santa". So off they trundle to work with a spring in their step and a smile on their face.

Meanwhile, all other work colleagues are patiently waiting for that email that will inform them of the Secret Santa guidelines - deadline date and maximum amount to be spent. Once the email has been received there is no getting out of participating. It is very much compulsory participation by peer pressure!

The next step is to pull a name out of a hat. Everyone prays that the name they pull out is one that is easy to buy for. The reason being is that you do not want to buy a present for a newcomer that you do not know, or the nerd who sits in the corner doing the accounts payable and who reads Superman magazines in their lunch break. I, for one, always break out into a cold sweat when my hand reaches into the hat for that folded piece of paper that will reveal my Secret Santa destiny!

Once you have pulled a name out of the hat you will then need to work out what to buy for them. For some it is fairly easy as you will probably know what to get them. The main question in these cases is whether to get a serious or funny present. However, if you do pull out the Accounts Payable nerd then you have a serious problem!

In these cases it has been known for office workers to wake up in the middle of the night in a sweat thinking about what to buy. Over the next few days the buyer of the present will be trying to work out what the office nerd wants. The best way of doing this is to put the nerd under office surveillance. This includes following them at lunchtime as they walk to the local shops. With pen and paper in hand copious notes can be taken as to an appropriate present.

The final thing to do, if you want to have a successful Secret Santa experience, is not to leave everything to the last minute. You will normally find that what you were going to buy as a present is no longer available. You will then be left between choosing the latest Celine Dion album or Elton John's biography!

At last the day arrives and the Secret Santa presents are given out. It is always interesting to see the looks on peoples faces as five office workers all end up with the same Celine Dion cd!!

Sometimes presents are bought with good intentions only for the recipient to accept them with trepidation. A good rule of thumb is to not buy a book that is wrapped in plastic unless you have seen its contents. This recently happened at our Secret Santa experience. Needless to say that the illustrations in this book were not of shoes as the cover sort of indicated!!!

So, always take care and have fun if you are going to have a Secret Santa function at work.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If I were the Minister for Santa Affairs in your land, I would censor your Blog big time! :D

Are you saying that it is the office workers and not Santa (OMG, OMS) who give the presents?

Da Santa Code supporter are you?

I suggest this content above be rated M, for mature audience only!