Friday, August 15, 2008

An Event

Every week an email arrives with the week's menu from the cafeteria. This allows people to plan in advance based on dietary restrictions. I can plan to avoid the area based on (for example) a total lack of kosher options on, say, Monday and Tuesday.
The menu email, which is usually blank and contains a Word document menu attachment, this week came with text in the body.
"Thursday is Greek Day".
Greek Day around here is an event which seems to revolve around a corporate culture which is enamored with spinach casserole. This is a worthy object of affection, certainly, but without completely embracing Greek culture it does not merit calling it a "Greek Day".
Thursday, we made "Greek Day" an event.
What was originally limited to a bunch of suits lined up for Feta Chicken was transformed into a full-contact festival of poorly accented, culturally dismissive yet enthusiastic activity.
It was apparently enough to send the Vice President of our division down to our work area in the early afternoon to gather "our side" of the events in question.
For the record, we did not order "baklava". We demanded "BAKLAVAUGH*cough-hack*". Loudly.
We did not throw the plates against the wall after lunch. That was someone else. I did throw an empty styrofoam cup against a wall, but it was very unsatisfying even with the obligatory "OPA!!!!"
"Opa" itself is a satisfactory answer to any question on Greek Day.

"Would you like cucumber on your whole wheat feta chicken wrap?"

We did not grunt menacingly at the native Iranian members of our Help Desk. If they were made to feel uncomfortable, it was probably related to someone in Accounting. Those guys are animals.
In the contemporary corporate environment, enthusiasm is more infectious than that bizarre, highly contagious, untreatable stomach bug that guy brought in from his kid's daycare.
Side note: I hate that guy.
If you are going to offer a "Greek Day", make it a party.
People have their joy restricted enough at work without preventing them from jumping on a folding table for an impromptu Tsifteteli, you know?
I mean, the economy is pretty shot. Middle management types are starting to really get that edgy, sweaty, anxious look. I've even switched to unflavored vodka in order to save money.
Let us cut loose and fling flatware on freaking Greek Day.
The VP told me my enthusiasm for Greek Day would make my performance review easy. I'm choosing to believe that is a good thing.

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