Thursday, December 12, 2013

Drink the Kool-Aid and Nobody Gets Hurt

Each workgroup is to decorate a door in its area in the holiday spirit. Only one will win, and the winner shall feast upon the bloody flesh of the losers.

Whoops! Sorry, got a little carried away there. They'll get a box of peanut brittle.

I'm not participating, because I'll be off for the day (having worked the weekend - thus escaping, I might add, a lot more lightly than many of my coworkers who had significantly less pleasant duties during the winter storm, such as actually talking to people), but some have suggested that the recent extreme and difficult weather ought to tie into our office holiday observances.

For instance, Santa's sleigh could be locked in ice-bound traffic. Reindeer would be eaten by stranded, desperate travelers. (I think Norway already has a national dish based on this concept, so it's not without precedent.)

Better yet, the Kool-Aid guy could break through the ice walls with his refined-sugar-processed-flavor-product powers and bring peace and harmony back to a teetering civilization (which, I'm sorry, should really not be so wobbly after just two and a half days without unrestricted access to Wal-Mart) - but at what price? What would he tell us today? Is the inorganic, processed-food apocalypse foretold by his wanton destruction of our flimsy man-made structures? Isn't his jolly demeanor in the face of utter ruin the very embodiment of what commercial marketing is all about?

On a similar note, I began my holiday shopping today (it's Christmas shopping, actually, but I like to call it holiday shopping in order to offend the type of people who insist on spelling Christmas CHRISTmas, then spend obscene amounts of money on stuff nobody really needs and take down all their decorations on December 26) with an earnest endeavour to "shop local," as they say.

Have you spent much time in local shops? It strikes me that these shops largely exist to cater to tourists - which is fine - but does make them less than ideal in terms of a place for a local to buy presents for other locals. I mean, I want to support local business as much as anyone, but my boyfriend wants an enamel-coated 12-piece cookware set, and the closest I can find to that locally is a novelty shot glass that reads "Keep Austin Weird."

So shop local, spruce up your office, drive safely, and look out for the Kool-Aid Man. That guy is bad news.

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