December 12, 2011 in Category Scarlett Guides To Life...,Work

The Scarlett Guide To… The Office Christmas Party

The Christmas season is well and truly upon us, so Wonderland has iced over for some seriously Scarlett festive fun and tips on surviving those awkward Christmas moments… 

Welcome to a Scarlet WINTER Wonderland

… and where better to start than…

The Scarlett Guide To… The Office Christmas Party

The office Christmas party is the one time of year that you can let your hair down and actually try to enjoy the company of your colleagues. Which, lets be honest, usually requires the help of a bottle of wine, 3 tequila slammers and some of the cheesiest Christmas songs… the downside, of course, is all three of those things are likely to bring out that rebel that you keep hidden during office hours. And probably the shit dancer that hides deep inside you.

My best advice would be to avoid getting drunk, not to say anything inappropriate and, most importantly, not to have sex… with anyone.

Especially not your boss.

But we all know you’re going to ignore my advice, so lets focus on some serious damage control from the moment you wake up…

  • The first few minutes…

You’ve woken up in your own bed…

Firstly, congratulations on making it home in one piece! If you’ve woken up alone that’s even better, straight away the chances of an horribly awkward morning has dramatically decreased.

If you’ve woken up with someone in your bed don’t fret… if it’s non-workmate booty call that you rang at 3am, then we can deal with that later. Sneak into the shower and hope to god they’ve left before you get out – if they haven’t rush around and pretend you’re late – they’ll soon get the hint.

If it’s a colleague then you’re on shakier ground, but remember that you have the home-field advantage and they’re the one that has to leave.

Laugh and offer them a cup of tea, but in a hurried way… much like with a booty call, if you go to get into the shower they will leave immediately so I’d suggest do that straight away, even if it means waiting for them to leave before you get out and throw up in the toilet.

If it’s the college intern, the situation requires a little more attention… but a grown up chat should do the trick, they’re unlikely to spread the word if they’re trying to make a good impression.

You’ve woken up in someone else’s bed… 

Whatever you do don’t just sneak out, you’re going to have to face them sooner or later and it’s much better to do so while you’re alone rather than in with the whole office as your audience. Laugh and discuss how “ridiculously wasted” you were… and whatever you do don’t mention the sex!

Especially not if it was awful.

And even more especially if you like them and want to strike up a relationship – in depth conversations about “where you’re both going with this” and “how you feel about eachother” should never be tackled with a banging headache and dry mouth.

If the sex was awful it should never be discussed, ever, unless they do something really bad to you – and even then it’s a bit of a shitty low blow and should only ever be saved for complete and utter arseholes.

If you’ve woken up in the intern’s bed, again you need to approach the situation a bit more delicately. When I say delicately I mean both with your adult chat and your footing when sneaking out the house without waking their parents. If you do get caught by their mother, be nice, and try to act as close to their age as possible – the interns, not their mother’s! Don’t accept any offers to sit and enjoy a civilised breakfast with them… and CERTAINLY don’t offer him/her a lift to work, nothing screams ‘we shagged’ than turning up at the office together.

You’ve woken up in your bosses bed…

This is probably going to be a much more awkward conversation than if it were just ‘Dave from admin’, but on the bright side you’re in for at least a few weeks of favouritism and potentially a pay rise. If it was the bed of your ‘straight’ boss of the same sex then that’s even better, you’re more than likely in for a spectacular pay rise, new office and even some of the posh post-it notes and colour printing rights.

You’ve woken up in hospital…

Now I’m not going to judge, but you probably overdid it a bit last night. On the bright side you’re getting a day off work so happy fucking days!

  • Analysing the situation

Find out what happened…

As scatty as the results may be, if you wan to shed some light on the night before you’re going to have to check your phone for any clues, especially your sent messages. I can tell you right now from personal experience, there is nothing worse than that feeling of utter embarrassment you feel when you re-read your sent messages after a particular heavy one and, if you’re reading this in advance, I would recommend giving your phone to a sensible friend after 1am. Camera’s are also a great source of information, which is good news if you’re the owner… not so good news if you wake up to 104 photo tags on Facebook…


These are all pieces of the puzzle and key to finding out what happened the night before. If you have someone else’s name  suddenly tattooed onto your body it’s advisable that they are your first port of call to fill in the details.

  • Damage Control

Face the music…

Whatever you’ve done, however hungover you feel you HAVE to go into the office. It’s a lot more difficult for people to spread rumours/bitch about you if you’re in the room and it also gives you the chance to give your side of the story. If you’ve trashed the office, thrown up over someone’s new dress or said something particularly offensive there’s nothing else you can do but apologise. A lot. And cough up for the dry cleaning bill.

Shift the blame…

Like I said, holding your hands up and saying “I’m sorry” is the best way to handle a situation… but that doesn’t mean you can’t give yourself an excuse. ALWAYS claim that you were on antibiotics/haven’t drank in months rather than admit to downing a 1/4 bottle of vodka prior to arriving.

This is a last resort, but if you’ve done something particularly bad and are the sole source of conversation, it’s probably worth subtly reminding everyone of someone else’s embarrassing actions… yes it’s harsh on them but this is a matter of survival – and you can bet they’d be doing the same if they were in your shoes.

  • Don’t beat yourself up

We’ve ALL been there, and you can guarantee that at the same time that you’re cringing over those flashbacks hundreds of other people across the country are doing the exact same thing. Within seven days someone else will have make a show of themselves and you’ll be old news… hopefully.

15 comments… read them below or add one

Cari December 12, 2011 at 6:31 pm

haha, great post Jen. I would say the hospital would be the winner. All for not, if you don’t remember anything right? Wait, not remembering might be for the best:)


Jen December 12, 2011 at 8:09 pm

Exactly Cari, the morning-after flashbacks are the worst thing in the world x


Jenn December 12, 2011 at 8:10 pm

LOLOL!! IT’s been awhile since I’ve been that Sh*tfaced!! HA HA HA. Of course those days for me were prior to cell phones and internet!! We won’t mention the New Years Eve Party of 92 that lead to a horrific Jan 1 1993. All I can say to that one was: it was dark when I got dressed, I had no idea one could actually be drunk for 2 days, at least I woke up next to my boyfriend–unlike my best friend who lost hers and well it got interesting 😀

Cheers, Jenn


Jen December 12, 2011 at 8:12 pm

Sounds like a good night Jenn… sometimes it’s better to stay drunk for two days, at least it puts of the inevitable cringing for a bit longer! xx


Toni December 12, 2011 at 8:32 pm

Hun it took me 2 or 3 times to stop laughing and keep reading. So true! lol. And to think I might have (almost) fallen into a couple of those traps myself lately makes it even funnier =D


Ciara Ballintyne December 12, 2011 at 9:58 pm

Giving me good cause to love my workplace even more! Seven women, no men, we all love each other (really, this office wopuldn’t function otherwise), know each other’s dirty secrets, and can happily get drunk together and rock up to work on Monday with no embarrassment. No wonder I’ve been here eight years.


Monica December 13, 2011 at 10:34 am

Haha, this is hilarious. I love the fact that you’ve got an option for ‘woken up in hospital’. Hehe.


Carola December 13, 2011 at 7:34 pm

Dear Jenn, where do you come up with this stuff??? Always so entertaining. Of all the scenarios I would much less prefer waking up at the student intern’s place, yikes!


Stefanie December 13, 2011 at 11:14 pm

HA, great post! I’ve been bartending at several company Christmas parties on the weekends and I’m waiting, just waiting, for someone to get out of control and give me a show to watch. Maybe I need to make those drinks a little stronger…


Elle December 14, 2011 at 9:58 pm

Girl, I couldn’t even bring myself to attend this year’s work Christmas party after what happened last year. I got wasted and hit on my bosses hispanic boyfriend in fluent Spanish…over a microphone so everyone could hear. I also hit on another one of my coworkers dates…again over the microphone. Oh, and then there was my stint where I thought I was freaking Carrie Underwood and I hogged the karaoke machine with my work husband refusing to let anyone else sing. Good times.


ShimonZ December 15, 2011 at 9:46 am

you’re a wonderful story teller, and have a great sense of humor. What more can I say than I really enjoyed this piece.


Amberr Meadows December 16, 2011 at 8:42 pm

Hahahahahahana! I absolutely needed a good laugh. You are witty and a great writer, and I’ll be back for more posts to come.


simply paul December 17, 2011 at 3:49 pm

even though i don’t drink i do love reading your guides!


Lady Daa Doo December 20, 2011 at 10:49 pm

hahahahaha!! Love it! What a great post. I’ve woken up in a couple of these situations, except the hospital one. Very funny and I will be back to read more!!


Julia December 21, 2011 at 3:44 pm

Love it. That is all.


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