April 6, 2012 Leave a comment
There are a lot of people who work in this office, so it’s pretty easy for a coworker’s birthday to go unnoticed. To be truthful, if the company put together a birthday celebration for everyone who works here, we’d probably be standing around and eating cake every single day [side note: I consider this to be a 100% acceptable alternative to my day-to-day work obligations]. While most people normally expect a co-worker’s birthday to resemble that scene in Office Space where they do a deplorable rendition of “Happy Birthday” and then cheat the weird guy out of a slice of cake, my office does things a little differently…
It was a Friday morning. Just a few days prior, Brad, one of our senior code-monkeys, was engaged in a casual game of tennis with Amir, a junior programmer, and had mentioned he was heading out on the town to celebrate his birthday that Friday night with a bunch of his college buddies. At that time, we were working on a team of about 10 and we all got along pretty well, so if we knew a birthday was coming around we’d sometimes take that person out for drinks after work. No big deal.
Around 10AM that morning, Amir gets up from his desk:
Amir: Hey Guys! I wanted to take a quick second and announce that our very own Brad is turning 28 today! Let’s hear it for Brad!
[Everybody turns around and sees Brad, two out of 15 people do a half-assed clap, his face is bright red and donning an uncomfortable smile]
Brad: Hey, uh, thanks Amir, thanks guys.
We’re about to all go back to work when Amir pulls out a gift bag and hands it to Brad, saying it was a token of his appreciation for Brad being such a good mentor over the past eight months. Brad opens the gift bag and pulls out a bottle of Macallan 25 Scotch. For those unfamiliar, please find the listing from the VA ABC below:
Brad: (knowing this is a ~$900 bottle of Scotch) Ummm Amir?! I can’t take this!! I wouldn’t even buy this for my dad… I wouldn’t buy this for MYSELF! This is way too expensive!
Amir: It’s impolite to give it back. I want you to have it. You mentioned you liked Scotch the other day, and well, here’s some of the best that money can buy.
And now things are VERY uncomfortable, both for Brad and for everybody else. It’s like some kind of awkward and horrible circus act gone awry. NOBODY knows what to say…I look around and realize that we have all just become a frozen audience paralyzed by varying expressions of incredulity:
oh and I should probably include what I looked like at this moment….
Happy Birthday Brad! Time for everyone to instant message one another with WTFs for the rest of the day.