Company Functions Are Not Too Exciting

Last Thursday April 29th, 2004 our office had an outing because different people from the company came to Hawaii for business. Although this was not mandatory it was highly encouraged to attend. I figured that meant you don’t have to go, but we”ll all be pissed off at you later. Since I don’t have a life I decided I would go and try to work on my nonexsistant social skills.

To give you some insite on how I resolve issues, suggest ideas, or criticize something I don’t like with others I work with, I usually do it after we’ve been drinking for a while. That is my way of dealing with sometimes uncomfortable situations. I figure if we’re all drinking and talking about it we are more relaxed and more open to suggestions. Plus everybody is more willing to bullshit, share stories, and talk smack after they have been drinking.

Now that you understand how I like to deal with these kind of situations I’ll move onto how this night went. The night started out with everybody arriving at an over crowded Chuck’s Steakhouse in Waikiki. This place didn’t have much seating, was dark, and over priced. Since for the past couple of days I didn’t have much time to do anything, but sleep on my time and nobody was talking with me. I decided to make a phone call. I kid you not, as soon as I started talking with somebody on the phone then people I worked with started trying to talk with me. Which I nicely shugged them off and identified I was on the phone to them. After I had gotten off the phone I decided to talk with the other guys I work with. During our conversations the staff of Chuck’s Steakhouse kept interrupting us so they could squeeze by.

The time had arrived for us to get to our 50 foot long table. Everybody went to sit down. I ended up sitting in the smack dab middle of the table. I must have figured I wouldn’t be noticed sitting there. The little waiters and waitresses came around asking everybody what they wanted to drink. Since I had already drank about 4 Budweisers, why change? I ordered another. Then the waiters came around telling everybody the specials, I ended up interrupting the guy because I needed another beer. The guy then left and didn’t want to come back. So I decided to call him back over to finish saying the specials. Once he completed his little speal he asked me what I wanted to order. Since I don’t like eating at these types of events I decided to maintain my liquid diet. I ordered another beer. Everybody had noticed that I didn’t want to eat and asked me, “You’re not eating”? I told them I had to watch my figure. The night went on with everybody eating while I drank my beer.

I sat next to a cool guy that I enjoy talking with because he knows the company and he tends to give me some insight and points me in the right direction. We sat there talking trying to keep our conversation private, but I notice others eyes kept peering over to see what we were talking about. Then the waitresses showed up with the bill. Since this is Hawaii and the education level is low here. The waitresses like to put everybody”s bill on just one big check. I didn’t have any cash on me so I ran downstairs to pull money out of the ATM. When I came back like everybody else had left except for a few people. It seemed as though they were all waiting for the first person to leave so they could follow. Since they didn’t know I was only going to the ATM they thought I was leaving and decided to follow.

By this time I was feeling pretty good and was willing to open up and talk with others. Since the only other person staying around with me was the Director of Operations. I decided to open up and talk with him. Prior to this event the only thing I know about this guy is that we retired from the Marine Corps as an officer and he was a private type of guy. So I decided to try to get him to open up. I started out by letting him know my position of wanting to learn from his experiences. I also identified that others find him to be a rather private person and I informed him that since he has been with the company for a while and has retired from the Marines. I feel he has a lot of experiences I could learn from. We all know I can”t really learn from my current supervisor (If you want to know more about why, read the previous article entitled, “Do unprofessional bosses make good managers/leaders?“. I also told him it would be cool to hear about some of his stories, then the Director of Operations basically told me, “What you’re saying is good, but don’t expect to learn everything about me tonight”. I understood this as me making progress. I took this as him saying he may open up with time, but for now he’ll maintain the current level. I respect that and am willing to learn from his experiences when he is ready to open up, for now I’m happy with what I have achieved.

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