The Company Christmas Party

The sequence of company communications below is absolutely knee slapping hilarious. It reminds me of the days I still worked for a living. Our company was still small, and too cheap to give us a party, so we the employees, organized a Christmas Dinner Party with drinks, food, and music. We charged twenty bucks a couple for a Favor. The party took place at Chet and Lucy’s in Oak Forest.


We made one fatal error. At the last minute one of our organizers invited the company owner and his wife. The “man” came, and had a wonderful time. The band that entertained was a trio of wanna be cowboys from the Tool Room who played instruments and sang country songs. The evening was a huge hit. So much so, that the owner called the committee, and thanked them for organizing, and he asked to be included from then on.

When the party was small, everyone there knew every one else. The owner and his wife blended in like family. As the function grew things changed. Suddenly, the owner and his wife were sitting at a table with the corporate officers. One year I happened to arrive late. There were only two seats left in the house, so Barb and I had dinner with the owner, his wife, the Executive VP, and his wife, and the VP of Marketing and his wife. What do you talk about to people like that? They certainly were not interested in how our kids were developing in school, or our camping trips. We survived, and we learned that even though they made a lot more money than I did, they were simple folks. We made it a point to come earlier after that.

The company grew but the Christmas party did not, and the newer Divisions located within a few miles from head quarters complained that it was unfair that they were not included. The party grew. The owner kept coming, and his wife asked if she could entertain by singing with the band. Reluctantly they agreed she could (all feared for their careers). She sang, but off key. Her husband was completely embarrassed, but he loved his wife and said nothing. After that party, he told the committee he would pop for a regular band (he wanted one that stayed away from his wife’s favorite music). The party out grew Chet and Lucy’s and moved to Silver Lakes Country Club.


The company kept growing and the Divisions kept expanding to the point where each one held their own “intimate” Christmas party. The owner and his wife regaled at going to all the events, but after a few years it became apparent that it was too much party for them. In some years they had to make several parties on the same night. He asked the Divisions to organize a single function in a venue big enough to handle two thousand people. There was only one in the Southwest suburbs big enough to do the job, Condesa Del Mar. The Condessa was a new banquet hall which featured big name entertainment to draw people. Their very first function was a dinner dance featuring Bob Hope as the entertainer. Needless to say, the Condessa became a name on the SW side.

The company party at the Condessa promised to be a fabulous evening. All the big shots were there; the politicking and ass kissing that went on was astronomical. The Condessa was overwhelmed. Their cook staff could not accommodate two-thousand hot meals served simultaneously, and by the time the back end of the hall was being served, the front end people were listening to the featured comedian entertainer. The dinner was steak, but because it got cold waiting for the staff to serve them they ladled brown gravy over the meat to keep warm. Hundreds of diners rejected the meal, and they went back to the kitchen untouched.


After this event, the owner called the committee together and commanded that such a huge party would never be held again. Instead each Division got a budget to run their own party any way they deemed fit. The owner never attended again.

As I write this tale I think about how this story is a direct example of our government. The bigger it gets the more screwed up simple things become.

Here is the series of memos I received from a friend that tickled my brain into remembering this story.


Company Memo

FROM: Patty Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: All Employees
DATE: November 1, 2012
RE: Gala Christmas Party

I’m happy to inform you that the company Christmas Party will take place on December 23rd, starting at noon in the private function room at the Grill House.

There will be a cash bar and plenty of drinks! We’ll have a small band playing traditional carols… Feel free to sing along. And don’t be surprised if our CEO shows up dressed as Santa Claus!

A Christmas tree will be lit at 1:00 PM. Exchanges of gifts among employees can be done at that time; however, no gift should be over $10.00 to make the giving of gifts easy for everyone’s pockets.

This gathering is only for employees!

Our CEO will make a special announcement at that time!

Merry Christmas to you and your family,

FROM: Patty Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: All Employees
DATE: November 2, 20102
RE: Gala Holiday Party

In no way was yesterday’s memo intended to exclude our Jewish employees. We recognize that Hanukkah is an important holiday, which often coincides with Christmas, though unfortunately not this year.

However, from now on, we’re calling it our “Holiday Party.” The same policy applies to any other employees who are not Christians and to those still celebrating Reconciliation Day.

There will be no Christmas tree and no Christmas carols will be sung.

We will have other types of music for your enjoyment.

Happy now?

Happy Holidays to you and your family,

Company Memo
FROM: Patty Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: All Employees
DATE: November 3, 2012
RE: Holiday Party

Regarding the note I received from a member of Alcoholics Anonymous requesting a non-drinking table, you didn’t sign your name…

I’m happy to accommodate this request, but if I put a sign on a table that reads, “AA Only”, you wouldn’t be anonymous anymore. How am I supposed to handle this?


And sorry, but forget about the gift exchange, no gifts are allowed since the union members feel that $10.00 is too much money and the executives believe $10.00 is a little chintzy.



Company Memo
FROM: Patty Lewis, Human Resources Director
To: All Employees
DATE: November 4, 2012
RE: Generic Holiday Party

What a diverse group we are! I had no idea that December 20th begins the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which forbids eating and drinking during daylight hours.

There goes the party! Seriously, we can appreciate how a luncheon at this time of year does not accommodate our Muslim employees’ beliefs. Perhaps the Grill House can hold off on serving your meal until the end of the party or else package everything for you to take it home in little foil doggy baggy. Will that work?

Meanwhile, I’ve arranged for members of Weight Watchers to sit farthest from the dessert buffet, and pregnant women will get the table closest to the restrooms.

Gays are allowed to sit with each other. Lesbians do not have to sit with Gay men, each group will have their own table.

Yes, there will be flower arrangement for the Gay men’s table.
To the person asking permission to cross dress, the Grill House asks that no cross-dressing be allowed, apparently because of concerns about confusion in the restrooms. Sorry.

We will have booster seats for short people.
Low-fat food will be available for those on a diet.

I am sorry to report that we cannot control the amount of salt used in the food . The Grill House suggests that people with high blood pressure taste a bite first.

There will be fresh “low sugar” fruits as dessert for diabetics, but the restaurant cannot supply “no sugar” desserts. Sorry!

Did I miss anything?!?!?

Company Memo
FROM: Patty Lewis, Human Resources Director
TO: All F*%^ing Employees
DATE: November 5, 2012
RE: The F*%^ing Holiday Party

I’ve had it with you vegetarian pricks!!! We’re going to keep this party at the Grill House whether you like it or not, so you can sit quietly at the table furthest from the “grill of death,” as you so quaintly put it, and you’ll get your f*%^ing salad bar, including organic tomatoes.

But you know, tomatoes have feelings, too. They scream when you slice them. I’ve heard them scream. I’m hearing them scream right NOW!

The rest of you f*%^ing wierdos can kiss my *ss. I hope you all have a rotten holiday!

Drive drunk and die,

The B*tch from H*ll!!!

Company Memo
FROM: Joan Bishop, Acting Human Resources Director
DATE: November 6, 2012
RE: Patty Lewis and Holiday Party

I’m sure I speak for all of us in wishing Patty Lewis a speedy recovery from her recent nervous breakdown and I’ll continue to forward your cards to her at the asylum.

In the meantime, management has decided to cancel our Holiday Party and give everyone the afternoon of the 23rd off with full pay.

Happy Whatever!

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