Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Fallsview Hilton, Niagara Falls, Ontario. Annual company meeting. The agenda:

Breakfast: Everything doughy and unhealthy you can imagine.

Guest speaker: Forty-five minutes of jokes in order to ‘warm the audience up’ and fifteen minutes inadequately glossing over something called emotional intelligence. Or was it emotional quotient? I forget. Whatever it was it must surely have changed my life.

Team-building event: Photo scavenger hunt: Tramping all over Niagara Falls with Polaroid cameras and GPS devices, pissing off merchants and frightening small children. I made a ridiculously stupid face in every photo. A different one every time.


Stuff: Talk. Applaud. Repeat 800 times.

Check-in: Showered. Felt – and smelled – human again.

I had seven. Yes, seven.

Dinner: Five wine-drinkers at our table. We drank five bottles of wine. You can bet I pulled my weight and then some. You see where this is going, don’t you? Oh, and I also had a beer and then another on the way to the…

Evening event: Slutty Olive Restaurant and Booze Festival – or something like that. They had a strictly awesome band. Danced like a freak to Beatles and Stones songs for hours. Had four drinks on the company tab. Bought myself drinks. Drank drinks bought for me by other people. Appropriated unknown persons’ abandoned drinks (God, how I wish I was kidding). Inexplicably avoided hospitalization and/or death.

Lost my credit card. Lost my debit card. Received credit card from the coworker who found it.

Told a big-wheel VP, when he asked about my career aspirations at Ye Olde Information Company, “To get a severance package” and then declared my “calling to a higher power.” I’m totally not kidding.

He was intrigued, bought us some vodka shots and invited me to make us a lunch appointment through his secretary and “Do you like sushi?”


The unofficial wee-hours event: While most were either in bed or at the casino, I asked a cabby to take me to Denny’s. He pointed up the street, not a block away, and said, “It’s right there.”

Went to Denny’s. Ordered the chicken shwarma. Couldn’t figure out where all the tables and chairs were. Was told this wasn’t Denny’s but a chicken shwarma stand. Inhaled chicken shwarma. Went next door to Denny’s. Inhaled a lumberjack grand slam.

The tomorrow-has-come-too-soon event: Asked cabby to take me to the Hilton.

“Under ten bucks. Cash only,”

“I have no cash,” said I, laying back head and closing eyes, demonstrating that I wasn’t going anywhere and would be perfectly happy to sleep in his cab instead.

He drove around the corner to the 7-Eleven and told me there was a cash machine inside. I went in, discovered debit card was still missing, inserted credit card and discovered I still do not know my credit card PIN number.

Went back and told the cabby to do ten dollars worth of driving around. He drove around the corner to the hotel and gave himself a five-dollar tip. I thought about puking in his back seat but decided to be a super nice guy instead.

Went to bed at 4AM. Woke up at 7 with something akin to a brain aneurism. Couldn’t go back to sleep because I was convinced that the pillow was chewing on my head.

Had three Advils, two coffees, three glasses of grapefruit juice and three glasses of water for breakfast at the 33rd floor restaurant overlooking the falls. Nice view. If only I hadn’t the ardent desire to leap through the glass and plunge to a watery death.

Took the bus back to the office. Emailed Big Wheel’s secretary and made the sushi appointment for July 1st. And sushi is the perfect food because I can’t eat it without dripping gallons of soya sauce on myself. How ever my end to full-time career comes – I’m sensing it may be soon and spectacular!

Days since becoming an alcohol abstainer: 1


Anonymous said...

scavenger hunt?

Wow, you really tied one on, lol.

Fantasy Writer Guy said...

Yeah, I tied one on alright, and it followed me around for a couple days.

Kathleen said...

You don't have Dominion (Canada) Day off from work?

Fantasy Writer Guy said...

Kats -- most of us assumed that we would take Monday June 30 off instead. Summer holidays are usually tinkered with in order to make long weekends out of them. But in fact we discovered that Ye Olde Info Co has decided to observe the holiday strictly so the lunch date was moved to July 4th.