Another fiasco in the making

In yet another example of my IT department’s ability to communicate, there is controversy over the department Christmas outing. One of the managers decided that it would be a great idea to hire an entire screen at the local cinema so that we could all bring our families for a private showing of the new Christmas Carol movie. This idea was discussed at the team meeting for my team last week and we all firmly stated that this wasn’t what we wanted to do and that none of us would actually be going.

Co-worker L toddled off to state our position to our manager. He apparently nodded and agreed that it might not be a good plan.

Thus, today, we received an email inviting us to the IT Christmas event…a private showing of A Christmas Carol. Signed by all the managers, including ours.


Just to make it even better, the entire event (and the wording makes this clear) is aimed at families with children. Not exactly inclusive to those of us who have chosen not to spawn or who are not yet parents. Nor is it great for those with older children who have flown the nest.

The final nail in the coffin is that our manager’s budget has been put into this, leaving nothing for an alternative event, and none of my team will be going. We’ll still be doing something – probably going out for a nice lunch – but we’ll be picking up the tab ourselves. Unlike last year, when our manager’s budget was used to buy us a rather nice meal at a very nice restaurant one evening and we all got to be grown-ups and enjoy each other’s company.

I am perfectly fine with my decision not to have children and most of the time it isn’t a problem. Then there are things like this where I am made to feel like an excluded, second-class citizen because I don’t have children and it makes me angry.

I do understand that we’re trying to do more things as a department, rather than splitting into our little teams for everything, but that really only works when joint activities have half a chance of being enjoyable for the majority. Probably less than a quarter of the department have children under 10 and the only adult in my team that wants to see this movie has already seen it with his girlfriend. The only person in my team with kids under 10 has them in activities that are ramping up for Christmas displays so she can’t pull them out for a Saturday morning (yes, Saturday morning!) event like this.

On the one hand, I’m glad that I’ve got a bridal shower to use as an excuse not to go (rather than having to confess my hatred for Jim Carey to my manager). OTOH, I’m pretty peeved that my team’s budget will be going to support an event that none of us will actually be attending and we’ll be having to fork out for our own thing instead.

4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. lulubelle
    Nov 10, 2009 @ 19:20:37

    That’s terrible. If no one on your team is going, then it doesn’t make sense at all for your team’s budget to be paying for it.

    At any rate, our knitting party will completely rock.


    • archerygirl
      Nov 10, 2009 @ 19:43:09

      Our knitting party may be my only Christmas party of the season!

      The big problem is that renting the cinema will be so expensive that the only way to do it is to use the entire IT department Christmas budget. That’s not making me any happier about all of this because I know that a lot of people won’t go just because of what it is and the time. Even the folks with kids aren’t happy – I think they were looking forward to a night out without the kids!


  2. hellcat
    Nov 12, 2009 @ 07:47:24

    I think that is just a dumb idea overall. Kind of like the year I left my sign shop job when they decided instead of a big party and having fun they would pay for us all to go on the Harbour Hopper. NO ONE’s idea of a good time, really. Unless you’re a tourist.
    And yeah-I can stomach Jim Carey depending on the movie, but that one just looks retarded.


    • archerygirl
      Nov 13, 2009 @ 11:31:56

      I haven’t met the movie that I can stomach Jim Carey in. Yikes.

      It’s a really dumb idea, I think. The idea is usually that the Christmas party/meal/whatever is rewarding staff for working hard all year. My idea of a reward is not a morning show of a movie I will dislike surrounded by other peoples’ screaming kids. That’s kind of my idea of torture. Even the people with kids of the right age here are rather unimpressed by the idea – they want to get away from the kids for an evening!


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