Corporate America enjoys forcing people who don’t like each other to pretend they do but only once a month and for no more than a half hour at a time. It’s called “Birthday Club”.
Everything about Birthday Club is excruciatingly awkward. Half of the people are actually gearing up for a good time (sad) and the other half look like they would rather perform their own lobotomy than be there (also sad).
Seating is a challenge. You don’t want to sit next to the birthday gal/gent because then you’ll be stuck passing around cake and napkins. You also don’t want to sit next to Tsaur because he’ll ask you what you’re doing this weekend. (Note-it could be a Monday and he will still ask this question). Your best bet is to just kind of hover around in the corner and say you have pink eye so everyone will keep clear.
Attendance will be taken so don’t think you can use the excuse that the meeting invite didn’t pop up on your Outlook. (Trust, I’ve tried). Please note that if someone is absent it is duly noted by the ringleader of Birthday Club (i.e. Boss Man’s secretary) who will then leave and walk the entire floor until she finds you hiding in the copy room and announces it’s “Cake Time!”
Once everyone is assembled it’s time to sing “Happy Birthday”. If there’s more than one person’s birthday that month rest assured people will say “Bob” and “Jane” at the same time and uproarious laughter will ensue. You know why? Cause that’s funny! It’s funny when half the people say “Happy Birthday, Dear Bob” at the same time the other half says “Happy Birthday, Dear Jane”! Ha! I mean!
Cake cutting time! This is when it starts to get fun! Boss Man will ask Bob and Jane what they did for their special day and will interrupt them within 10 seconds and tell a story about the “good ole days back when he was in internal audit”. If you’re lucky someone will say something that they didn’t intend to be sexual but is and you will laugh (i.e. “I can’t believe how hard this is! I need to get on my knees to get to it!”).
After much thought and consideration I came to the conclusion that if I went to one more Birthday Club celebration I would freak the fuck out. So I told Secretary that I would no longer be able to attend due to these uncertain economic times. I said I didn’t think I would be able to afford it (budget cuts) and unfortunately Birthday Club had to go. I said I was sad about it and that I would miss it but alas, it was an extravagance I could no longer afford. Huzzah to the crumbling economy!