How to “Go Away” your own way

Is there anyone – ANYONE ON THE PLANET – who actually enjoys going away luncheons for departing colleagues?  Didn’t think so…

In my world, they are expected, and generally horrific, events whenever someone is promoted, moves to another group, or retires.  A low turnout is considered a “lack of love”, so if few respond to the announcement, management is out beating bushes to drum up attendance.

Having had to preside of many of these awful things when i was in management, i grew to hate them with the acrid fire of hydrofluoric acid.  And then some…

When i snuck away in the night changed jobs last year, i refused all attempts for a luncheon.  Organizational blasphemy!   i’d been there 27 years, and how could i dare deprive people the opportunity to wish me well? 

Fuck that.  Not my style.  These dinosaurs, they are tenacious, and i’ve fought it for over a year.  But pressure was on again – they played the “It’s bad for morale if you don’t let us do something” card, and i’d let them set up an informal event for later this month in the conference room.  i was even considering showing up for it…

Then my good friend, The Ninjaneer, sent out a party invitation.  He is changing jobs soon, and rather than leave the festivities up to a few well-intentioned suits, he is throwing his own party!  Deciding that this was a great way to take the monkey off my neck, back, shoulders and ass, he and i agreed to ‘tag-team’ it…


From: Ninjaneer
Subject: Ninjaneer – Going Away Party

Well folks, after 24 years here – “working” in one branch or the other – it’s time for me to pursue other opportunities in my Golden Years.  To that end, I have taken a position with our Southern Group, located on the sunny (or oily) shores of the Gulf of Mexico. 

With sincerest apologies to J.R.R Tolkien (and somewhat less sincere apologies to everybody else), I paraphrase Bilbo Baggins at his “Long Expected Party”, and I offer that, “I like more than half of you twice as well as I ever thought I would and hope less than half of you like me less than I think I deserve”. 

Now I realize at this point, as you ponder whether that was a compliment or not (it was), I’m supposed to slip on a magic ring and immediately disappear, but that’s unlikely to happen given that 5 different Directors and a host of Branch and Division Management folks  have been trying to make me disappear for 24 years now with no luck either….

Most of you are aware that I have little use for “going away” lunches, but like hobbits, I DO have a particular fondness for parties.  And in keeping with that fondness for food, drink and merriment – I want to throw MY “Long Expected Party” for you folks.

Both the food and the drink are on me.  Here are the details:

Date: 11 Aug 10

Time: 1530 –  until my budget runs out

Location: The Bar Up The Street

I’ve arranged for food, and they will provide more wings as we need them until we’ve “filled out the corners” as a good hobbit would say….. 

I will have an “open bar” until, again, my budget runs out…..

So all of you Boffins and Bolgers and Bracegirdles and the rest of you please join me for great party!  No wizards or fireworks please.

– The Ninjaneer

PS:  If I’ve forgotten anyone that doesn’t loathe me, please pass it on – but remember, the more people there, the less free food and booze for the rest of you…


Subject: RE: Ninjaneer – Going Away Party — NOW, WITH ADDED “FAREWELL FOR DAISYFAE”

Of the 27 years i worked there, The Ninjaneer served as “The Little Brother* i Never Wanted” for 24 of those…  When he suggested we combine parties, it seemed appropriate to join forces one last time, and see just how nervous we can make the management team! 

We have a rather amusing history – and if you show up, be sure to ask us for the story of how we tested out of “Sexual Harassment Training” by doing a skit.  If you wait til we’re plastered?  We might even provide an encore performance!

Maybe now he’ll stop looking at me and STAY ON HIS SIDE OF THE CAR!  AND STOP TOUCHING ME!  MOM!  He stole my blackberry! 

Oh, yeah.  The party… 

Granted, i’ve been gone for just over 13 months, so my departure event is a little overdue.  That is not due to lack of effort on the part of Management.  i’ve just been a little evasive**.

There will be food.  And drink.  And “equally attractive non-alcoholic beverages”….  We are requesting the omission of gifts.  Unless it’s a very fast motorcycle.  For me.  Or a speedboat.  Also for me.

Date: 11 Aug 10

Time: 1530  – until our budget runs out (Note:  We can drink longer.  i make more $$ than he does.)

Location:  The Bar Up The Street


* despite the fact that he is 1 year and 340 days OLDER than me…

** for those who have yet to notice, i left in June, 2009.  Like the Baltimore Colts, i went quietly in the night….