Well, we’re back! And I just want to thanks all y’alls who held down the fort in our absence.
More than 280 comments? You guys rock. Take a bow.
Now, you might have wondered where we were last week so I thought I’d share the personal journey of growth, exploration and development we went on together. While you guys were getting to know each other, we were doing the same. It was truly beautiful and… well… it wasn’t until Friday that it all devolved into a screeching, hair-pulling, slap fight that… uh… well… ultimately… Ugluk won.
I mean, the guy is really strong.
Anyway, the whole idea was to get away together for a staff retreat where we take the week to learn to trust each other and bond as a group through activities like rope climbs, scavenger hunts and that thing where you fall backwards into the arms of your coworkers.
Generally any time you hear the word “Psych!” yelled really loudly as you go into your fall you know it’s going to end badly. Fortunately, I was raised by wild chimps in Borneo, so I’m very limber and was able to nimbly tuck and roll as I hit the ground.
I did then spend the rest of that afternoon hanging from branches in the trees nearby and hurling my feces at the rest of the staff.
That’s actually something I picked up in business school, though, not during my time with the chimps. Every time I asked the chimps about that practice they’d just roll their eyes. Apparently one chimp did it about 40 years ago in a zoo in Ohio and now they’re all still paying for it.
The scavenger hunt ended equally as badly. Every time the facilitator would give us an item to find, the Entity would instantly disappear and reappear with the item and yell “Victory!” It was really pissing the facilitator off and he finally ended the hunt after the Entity came back with the carburetor for a ’68 Impala.
Somewhere some car nut is going to be really pissed when he gets into his Impala.
The worst, though, was the Circle Of Openness where we all sat around a camp fire and shared some secret about ourselves.
Since I had already displayed my freakish agility, I told them all about the chimps. Oddly, they didn’t seem really surprised.
Chet was next and what he shared really soured the tone for the rest of the session. Apparently, Emily has been telling him all about upcoming Apple products! He knows everything and just hasn’t been telling us! He said his love for Emily was too great to break her trust!
The recriminations really started flying after that.
As did the feces.
After about 15 minutes of yelling and hurling, the facilitator got us calmed down and we continued, but most of the rest of it was in a haze of anger. Masako shared something about her childhood… something about her dad being cold and distant… how that relates to her stalking Apple executives… I don’t know. To be frank, I wasn’t really listening. I was still steamed at Chet.
Howard then admitted his mouth really isn’t any cleaner than any of the rest of ours and that we really shouldn’t let him lick our faces because he’s been licking things he’d rather not mention. Ugluk said he’s been stealing office supplies and the Entity said something about knowing for a long time that the Cyber-Apocalypse is coming sooner than we think, with the running and the screaming and the mass extinction and killer robots and blah, blah, blah.
We rode back to the office in silence, but once the facilitator left we all lit into Chet. And then Masako started crying that no one cared about her feelings and Howard yelled “It’s my ass, OK?! I’ve been licking my own ass!” and the Entity said “We’re all going to die alone and afraid! Or, rather, you will all die alone and afraid. I can easily escape to another dimension. It’s not that it hasn’t been fun and all…”
That’s about when the hair-pulling and the kicking and the slapping started and pretty soon we were all whaling on each other until Ugluk stepped in schooled us but good.
Suddenly, we recognized how silly we were all being and just busted out laughing. By the end, we were hugging each other and saying how happy we were to work with such great people. We all agreed that next time we should skip the retreat and just have a slap fight in the parking lot.
Now it’s Monday morning and we’ve let go of the subterfuge and the bitter recriminations and the fighting and the tears and the admissions of ass licking…
But I think I’m gonna ask the Entity again about that Cyber-Apocalypse. That sounded kind of important.