Monday, December 19, 2005

White elephant.

Midway through my day's "work" (wherein I foolishly spent time online and on e-mail, rather than actually working), my supervisor came over to my desk to let me know that this year's holiday luncheon had started in one of the downstairs conference rooms. I received no notice of such a party this year, which I thought was an odd oversight considering how much planning had apparently gone into this year's semi-elaborate shindig.

My boss sat with me to eat after saying aloud to the group, "I'm going to sit in the unpopular section."

I shouted, "HEY!," when he said that, but he said to me that it didn't look like anyone else was fighting to sit with me. I guess he was right, and I didn't mind eating barbecue across from him and the other regional manager. (We comprised three of the five men in the room. There were about 25 people in the room total.) We talked about restoring classic cars, which I only know a little about because my dad does it, and we talked about movies. I told them that KING KONG didn't impress me as much as I wanted it to.

Anyway, I celebrated my status as the remaining token gay in the office during the White Elephant Gift Exchange, which I neither knew about nor submitted a gift for. Someone else gave up a turn and offered it to me.

So, if you know how a White Elephant Gift Exchange works, I had the chance to pull a wrapped gag gift off a table or snatch away a gift that someone else already won, and I used my turn to steal a White Elephant gift taken from one of my friends and right a previous wrong.

My turn came, and I sauntered across the room and snatched up the pretty, black patent-leather purse that the new, unsuspecting girl Tiffany had taken away from my friend Quaye, which led the ladies in the room and my bosses erupt in laughter.

"BENJIE!!!," Tiffany yelled at me. "WHAT ARE YOU GONNA DO WITH MY PURSE?"

"OH GOD," my friend Ron said. "Please don't answer that question."

Yeah, like I don't have outfits it would match.

During the holiday photo, we were all told to pose with our White Elephant gifts, and I took the purse out of its box, put my arm in the strap and posed for the photo, working the new handbag to the best of my ability.

After the party, of course, I gave the purse to my friend Quaye. But I did look nice holding it in that photo.

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