Each year, the holiday season would fill the office with excitement. There were the traditional traditions that made the office quite festive. There were also traditions unique to the office that many people enjoyed. Those often boosted the morale of the teams. Clients often wanted to know more about these novel ways of boosting morale, however, it was an in thing. You had to be of the office to know and understand these traditions.
Connor watched from a distance as the office came alive with buzz. Everyone wanted to know who was taking whom to the office party. Everyone was finding their dates. It could have been someone from the outside, an actual girlfriend, or spouse. Everyone had someone. And of course, those who dared date within the office had their dates already lined up.
The singles were left to fend and fight for the bits that was left and have a date from the office. While it was not clear to Connor why Betsy was single, she always managed to keep everyone guessing until the party.
The two women who provided the greatest amount of confusion to Connor were the ones everyone buzzed the most about. They were able to keep their choice of dates a secret every single year. Sometimes, they went without a date, causing much buzz and frenzy as to how they managed to pull that off. They rarely ever had a date from within the office, which added more chatter about their social ways.
Mind you, the dates were all playfully set. Unless someone was in a relationship or seriously heading into one, the dates setting was just part of the office morale humor thing they did.
It was a weird sort of office tradition. Dates were picked and set well in advance of the party. Over the years, it became a bit of a formalized informal thing that on a certain day, everyone sorted out their dates. It started as joke that became a trend. Some of the ladies even wore a special look that day to keep the humor going. A month after date selection moment, everyone came in with their ugly sweater. The office party would follow some short time afterward.
On the date setting day, many guys would showcase their most gallant and frivolous moves to pickup a date. There were a few who took pages from the medieval era and did sonnets and soliloquies to woo their date. Others picked different fantasy themes and played them out to win over the affection of their prospects. Others still suited up to the nines and tried to do a James Bond move to get a yes for the date.
After all the fun and games were settled, the ugly sweater day was just to have fun in the office and take a ton of pictures. This was a day to act like big overgrown kids. It was nice. It was cute. It was sweet.
It was all fun and games. No one took it to be more than that.
Connor had learned to avoid these Kodak moments. His heart bled inside. He could never manage to woo Betsy. Let alone be seen in a photograph next to her. There was no social validation he could get or create to show him that he had a prayer of a shot with Betsy. The brute always took those moments away from him. Or so it seemed anyway.
<The next post in the series is here… His Side>
Editorial Note: Adding a list of the chapters via a more modern approach. Just click on the image or title to read more of the chapters you’ve yet to read. Updated September 2018. After the list of chapters will eventually be a link to the portfolio table of contents. That particular page will eventually hold any new updates and chapters to this story… should there be more.
- Just Ask Already! Prelude - There are office party traditions that make sense and others that just don't. Navigating about the holiday spirit and cheer is one thing, complicating it with the feelings of love is quite another. Will our story hero find love or just be the laughing stock of the holidays?
- Just Ask Already! His Side - A person can spend a lot of time thinking about what could have, should have, would have, might have... Connor knew only one thing, his heart ached to be with Betsy. Yet, far as he could tell, she wanted nothing to do with him. Could he be right? Could he be overthinking things? Could he be missing some facts? Holidays are the worst times to be so lovelorn and alone... if only some clarity could be found...
- Just Ask Already! Her Side - Why must men make things so difficult. All they have to do is just ask... and accept whatever answer they get. NO.. Men just love making things difficult. A woman can only do so much to drop a hint. Maybe, just maybe, taking the ball into her own court might do the trick. Men! Just Ask Already!!!
- Just Ask Already! Mr. Braum - When a good best friend could do, sometimes a 'higher' power is needed. There are people who want you to succeed, but you're not always aware of them. Those folks can offer that nice swift hard kick in the pants a best friend may not... just to get you moving towards love. Especially during the crazy times of the holiday season
- Just Ask Already! The Party - That moment of truth... the music is just right, the stars are all aligned... the girl is looking into your eyes.... and you look... away?!?! Seriously though? Now you look away? NO! Just Ask Her Already! Some fellas just don't seem to get it. How many more flares need to explode? He's gonna get the girl, right?
- Just Ask Already! Conclusion? - Sometimes, just sometimes, you get lucky and question your good fortune. You've got the gal. You've got the relationship. Yet, you're not sure how you got so lucky This.. this is where a gentle post-got-lucky-debrief is not overkill. That is if you've got the right friends helping you out. Just don't overthink too much.
- Just Ask Already! Epilogue - He finally asked!!!! This is the part where a Hollywood ending would be perfect. Yet, there are a few loose ends the reader will be left to handle Things change once the question is asked and the answer is to the affirmative Now it's time to celebrate
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