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At my old job, the two top people LOVED team-building exercises. I'll refer
to these two as:
BC - Big Cheese (BC from here on out. Thanks, Jason)
Iago - Big Cheese's Sidekick (Iago, for all the trouble she stirred behind
the scenes the rest of the year.)
Each year we got together to do a "retreat" at the "big cheese's" house.
Luckily, in the evenings, the cheese opened her bar. This is where I
developed my taste for bourbon, at medicinal levels. Food was ordered in.
"Whiskey and shrimp. Whiskey and Shrimp" was my mantra throughout the hazing
earlier in the day:
Arm-Wrestling Contest - where Iago tells us to arm-wrestle each other and
count a point every time one of us wins. We have 2 minutes. I've handily
beat my opponent several times, when Iago and BC join in in the last 20
seconds. They "arm wrestle" by not actually wrestling, but just alternately
letting eachother "win" every second or two. Iago proclaims, "SEE?! WE won
by working together, not against each other!" My co-worker said, "That's
stupid." I still enjoy monthly dinner with my co-worker. She described the
following for this year's "retreat" just last month:
They each had to take a stick from the forest. Then decorate it with
glitter, yarn, shells - whatever Iago brought. They had to carry it with
them at all times. Each stick represents its maker. At night, they had to
circle a bonfire holding hands and then throw their sticks into the fire.
Iago said that this group self-immolation would represent their bonding.
One member was reluctant, saying, "Isn't this kind of creepy?" The secretary
whispered to her, "Just throw the d%#$ stick in the fire and let's be done
with it." The staff relented and tossed their totems. BC smiled tearfully
and asked for a group hug.
They skipped the cocktails this year. I became a technical writer just in