vague memories of last night:
...RalphyK as DJ, playing too many Robbie Williams songs. I become disgusted when he gives a shout out to all of us and plays ABBA ('Dancing Queen'). I attempt to smash his deck with my bare fists but am thrown out by TheAlchemist and iain.
...i reappear, disguised as a waiter. my beret gives me away, and it's all just been laughed off as a happy little fracas.
...FelonyMPulse rather suavely boogies with the Portuguese sister of the guy who had a burst appendix last month. My suspicions about his using a crutch to get an easy date grow steadily.
...WyldWynd and the guy from the IT department are snorting something in the next stall over. I am peeved i wasn't invited, and therefore urinate noisily. i note i have achieved clear urine.
...back at the bar, heyoka charges me three quid for a ginger ale. "hey! what happened to my tab?" i whinge. "Your plastic's no good here," she snarls.
...Dexy's Midnight Runners' 'come on, Eileen' begins. I grab my coat, glowering at RalphyK. Meanwhile, Dizzy's leg also seems to have miraculously healed, as he stomps on the cigarrete butt strewn floor, shouting "C'mon! Faster! c'mon!" I leave, and fondue smirks at me from behind the embrace of the office junior. Chilled Monkey is snogging her best friend in the hotel lobby.



oh.
hell.
no.
that wasn't a proper gathering of the army of the chilled monkeys at all.
that was my company christmas party. apparently, everybody there needed to shake my hand when i left.
what did i do?
why didn't i stay with the rest of you?
Next time, chain me to the monkey.
Arrive late, due to noding. Cough. Late for a meeting of noders, because of noding. Geek? Moi? Fuck you, pal.

Arrive at the pub, walk straight past everyone, and go upstairs. I am faced with the first problem of the evening - there is no upstairs. Well, it's closed. Go downstairs, and stare at people having a noisy drunken birthday party, some wide tart with tiny angel wings on (yeah, like it's going to take anything less than a fucking Seahawk get you off the ground, love), and lots of ugly freaks. Go back into the other bar, see Felony's drunken, scarred face, and make a beeline for it...

The awkward introductions take far too long, everyone stares at me, and I realise we're sticking with the e2 names, as opposed to real ones. (When I get home, my girlfriend asks me what their names were. I reply "Erm... I don't know...") I give fondue his present, an advert for Robbie Williams' new single, featuring many naked Robbies. It disturbs, it excites. Get a drink down me. Relax somewhat.

The evening starts off reasonably politely, quiet conversation, etc etc. gnarl goes off to his office party with a heavy heart - he knows full well that it will be appallingly bad, but goes anyway. gnarl is a brave, brave man.

(Insert many drinks. Stir.)

Later that evening... Iain sets off on an epic quest to find Jaffa Cakes, and we fear for his life. Felony keeps stroking my head, in a disturbingly affectionate way. I fear for my own life. Iain returns, and thanks to spiregrain we experience Jaffa Cakes soaked in Archer's peach schnapps. Oh, that feels gooooood... heyoka gets a text message from gnarl, at the office party - he fears for his life. There is much drunkenness, WyldWynd is wrestled to the floor, and the monkey is subject to so much abuse, it begins to fear for its life. WyldWynd talks to someone on his mobile phone, and fears for his life, thinking I'll beat him up for saying where he was. I try to explain that it was just a bit of ranting in a node, and that he is perfectly safe - I do this by picking up heyoka's bag, holding it in a girly way and shrieking "ooooooo-ooooooo!". Sometimes I'm too subtle.

We leave the pub, and head off to a sushi/Japanese/noodley-doodley place. There has been some sort of accident, and all the tables have sunk, so we are forced to sit in holes in the ground. Everybody else is perfectly at ease, able to use chopsticks, and understand what all the weird words on the menu mean. I ask for anything meaty, beef, chicken, anything that was once alive and died in terrible pain - preferably something that went out screaming, and shitting itself with fear. Heightens the taste, you see. I make do with beef teryaki (which is yummy). Some strange objects arrive on a plate. Me: "What are those?" Everyone: "Vegetables." Me: "What's happened to them?" I struggle bravely with the chopsticks for a while, and am doing okay. I glance over at Felony, who is looking at me with amusement. Okay, I say, downing the sticks, gimme a fucking fork then, you bastard. I get my fork - it is plastic. My humiliation is complete. Yummy beef, though.

Twice during the meal, the monkey attacks me, attaching itself limpet-style to my face. There may be a photograph of this event.

Eventually, it is all over, and we all head towards Bar Italia for a last drink. Along the way, I made my excuses, and left, as my trains home are on some sort of bizarre fantasy timetable. Felony fixes me with a steely glare, and says "We will see you soon."

On my way home, Felony's words return to haunt me. I fear for my life...

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