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If This Were the Beaches of Normandy, We'd Have Been the Axis Forces

Very, very few things serve to shake the Zeppelin's own foundations, but today, the content-finance department's team building activity at Roan Beach served to deal a double helping of fun and excitement to the life of Martin Cruz, writer-salaryman.

It was a long time coming, this team building activity, and I learned quite a bit about the otherwise benign folks of the BOTW team (I am the only member of the umbrella content department, and Argee [RG?] is the only other member of finance). I'm usually pretty benign myself, described by the office folks as the peevish, stern-looking, quiet writer who makes it a rule to come in late (oh boy, Lia is going to have my hide for that line).

But today. Today, ladies and gentlemen. Today, the very foundations of all these laid-back individuals were shaken, and the Cthulus that slept within the depths of their innermost beings were revealed, stank, ugly, and rather willing to party given a bottle or two of beers. There was the exciting trip to the beach via a rented jeep (Obi, ga-pakyaw ni :D), with pop music blasting from the speakers as if the entire jeep and everything within a twenty mile radius were composed of deaf people; there was also the sliding pasta, which only Soren and I could control like the lazy bastards we were: by hanging on to the edges of the trays, and shifting weights at every turn.

But the fun really started when we got to the beach itself. Carrying a fully loaded ice chest the size of me up a flight of stairs is no mean feat, and could only be achieved by yours truly, Raffy the rather insane Rapper, and Ferdy, whose Chick's Choice t-shirt really rather made my day. The karaoke machine was carried up as well, again by myself and my fellow lazy butt, Soren (Google Analytics will show a spike in the popularity of the dead philosopher's keyword after this post, I'm rather sure). After a heavy lunch which technically rendered us incapable of further movement, though, the real team building fun started.

We were first asked to scour the beach for the one thing that could have described us perfectly; again, me being the lazy butt that I was, grabbed a bottle of lukewarm beer from the nearest chest and used that for my show and tell. Soren followed suit, getting a bottle of isopropyl from his backpack, the copycat slut. And then it was a variation of the standard trust game: we were all given bandanas with which to cover our eyes with, and paired up with another team member (Lia, in her ever-loving nature to make life complicated for everybody, paired me up with Gillian for the first of many recurring pair-ups that day). Gillian was a pretty decent guide; I don't remember tripping once up and down the flight of steps. On the other hand, she made a horrible blind person, shaking like a twig during a Signal No. 4 typhoon with every step she had to take back to the beach, so much so that I had to lead her with two hands.

Then it was that group survival game, wherein Ferdy and I both discovered that we were sure goners should we ever encounter a plane crash into an environment that hosted sub-zero temperatures - apparently, 90-proof whiskey would serve only to hasten the advent of hypothermia, and guns, while a good source of heat, sound, and protection, was also a rather bad weapon in the hands of a hungry survivor suffering from the effects of said whiskey. Ah well. See you in hell, bitch. Soren, on the other hand, had a 60% survival rate - not that it mattered, since the rest of the world was better off without the lazy butt (kidding, dude, you know we love you and your thousand nipples, too).

Then it was that weird grouping game, wherein we were all blindfolded once again, and had to seek out our mates by the sound we were told to emit. Mine was a snake. So was Ferdy's, Soren's and Mai-Mai's, who remains to me a mysterious figure (given that she was in the morning shift and I had this uncanny penchant to get to the office late). Go figure. So I'm a snake. Badger, badger.

And then there was another grouping game, which ended up with me devising an insane idea wherein I was a master tamer and Yuki, Kat, and Rose, these three really cool women were my, uh, animals. Yeah, I know. The weirdest things happen to me.

After that, it was swimming to the wee hours of the night, then dinner, another team-building activity where we had to input our thoughts into these pieces of paper taped behind each others' backs (not that I could understand half of what was written on mine, due to the language barrier, thank you very much you lovable motherfuckers, but whoever called me " . . . jolly, witty, sexy . . ." knew what she [he? God forbid] was talking about).

And thus ended team-building, and it was beer and spin the bottle for the rest of the night. Then the reinforcements arrived: link department's David Piltlow (it's actually Pitlo), Ryan Yatol, and Marvin Barraquias accompanied Raffy, Ferdy and myself with around four more bottles of Red Horse Grande, while Soren, Anthony, and Argee went swimming from 2200 to 0230 in the friggin' rain. And I thought I was crazy. Went home with Ferdy at around 0330, and now, here I am.

Highlights of the day:
  • the rapidly vanishing food during lunch
  • Richard Cheese and Stephen Hawkins' duet in the jazz rendition of The Girl is Mine (don't mess with the paraplegic, yo!).
  • swimming. Finally, me in a body of water bigger than a bucket.
  • Gillian's involuntary jitters. I mean, really. Am I that scary?
  • dirty-dancing with Gillian and Rose to the tunes of the Deftones and the new Smashing Pumpkins.
  • dirty-dancing with Kat to some song (apparently, my high school skills remain intact; my grind is impeccable).
  • Salsa with Yuki (who was lousy) and Raffy (who actually rocked). Apparently, I know a few of the steps of salsa. Surprised the hell out of me too.
  • beer with kinilaw. I must learn how to prepare the damn thing.
  • the increasingly R-rated spin the bottle. Lia was of no use at restraining us at all. Some boss (kidding boss, please don't fire me).
  • I regained a friend. :D
The only bad things that happened was that I texted a dear friend a rather stupid message (a message that read "Shej" cannot get any dumber) using my last bit of load. And that I may very well be the target of new gossip come Monday due to some, ah, rather interesting twists of circumstance.

Cheers folks. :D I'm off to bed. If I get a copy of the video, I'll put it up at me Multiply. No incriminating evidence though.


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