Team Building Exercise

After I bounced the kids out of the basement yesterday, they continued their rowdy game of Blind Man’s Bluff in the backyard.

Basically, the game was about who could yell loudest while cheating all without getting caught by a blind person.  And when it wasn’t about that, it was about who could wear their bandana blindfold on their head in the most intimidating Bloods and Crips way.

You know what all that reminded me of?  A team building exercise I was subjected to back when I had a job.  And no, I don’t have another one yet, but thanks for asking!  stink eye, stink eye

We had meetings all morning long.  Then in the afternoon, we were told to change into sneakers and hightail it to a rendezvous place in the woods located somewhere on the “campus” of Company HQ.  [For those who don’t know, “Rendezvous place in the woods” is French for, “Does anyone else hear ‘Dueling Banjos’ playing in their head?!”]

All scary movies aside, thanks for the awesome tip about the sneakers.  How do you think my black pantsuit looks out here amongst the July humidity?  And aaaaaccck!  Was that a spider or a trickle of sweat?!??  Phew!  Just sweat.

Upon arrival in the woods, we were met by a representative of our own company whose JOB it was to conduct team building exercises!  This is an actual JOB?  And you roll up under the Fitness Center hierarchy??  What exactly is this “exercise” going to involve?!  If we have to do a ropes course or fall back into eachother’s arms, I’m out.  Also?  If we have to change into swimsuits for some wicky-wacky canoe races in the company pool, I’ve already done that – and I’m not EVEN joking about that – so I’m out as out can be.  A person should only be required to do that “swimsuit in front of co-workers” thing once in their life…if at all.

But no swimsuits required for this mission.  Instead, we split into two teams and after some verbal warm-ups (ex: “Two Truths and a Lie” where you tell the group two truths about yourself and one lie and they have to guess which is which – ugh) we move into more physical Three Stooges territory with activities like “Which team can pass the rubber chicken through everyone’s hands the fastest.”  And I’m not even joking about that one.  Hint: Have someone hold the rubber chicken at the top of a “tunnel” of hands formed by the rest of the team, then let it go.  As gravity does its work, it passes through everyone’s hands and is caught at the bottom by some poor, crouching co-worker.  Fast, right?  Winner, winner (rubber) chicken dinner!

Finally the adventure culminates with all of us having to move further into the woods and out of sight-distance from each other while one team member is left behind to be blindfolded, given a cigarette and shot by a firing squad.  Kidding.  Totally kidding.  Well, at least about the cigarette and firing squad.  But there is a blindfolded co-worker.  And then we have to regroup at the site of the blindfolded co-worker without using any verbal clues.  Clapping!  CLAPPING!!  Clap, clap, clapclapclap!  But the OTHER team is drawn to OUR team’s clapping.  Oh, ho, ho.  Isn’t that a gas?!??  Soooo fun and team build-ish. 

Eventually we’re all reunited with our assigned blindfolded person who then has to put us in order-of-birth-month I’m not even joking about that.  But since they can’t SEE, and we can’t TALK, we have to press Helen Keller symbols into their hand.  W-A-T-E-R.

Once we’re all lined up like a bunch of sweaty January-through-December schmucks, it’s all over and we’re allowed to go eating and drinking together.  Now THAT?  That eating and drinking thing??  THAT’S my idea of team building.  And I’m not even joking about that.