Monday, June 3, 2013

ENCORE - Staff competition for biggest, coolest water bottle gets out of hand

We're still on holiday. Here's a repeat of a story we thought should have had more play. Enjoy.


Metro’s largest charity has brought in new rules after an informal competition amongst staff for the biggest, coolest water bottle took a nasty turn last week.

The CEO of the Metro Hospital Trust put her foot down after a food fight broke out in the lunch room. Two people were injured. Police were called in, but no charges were filed. Witnesses say the altercation started when one worker made a joke about the finance director’s giant, yellow water bottle.

“Sue and Jane have been going at it for months, bringing in increasingly outlandish water bottles that they are constantly sipping on. So, when Sue told Jane that her water bottle looked like Big Bird, they just started going at each other,” said Dibble Brewer, an annual gifts officer.

Staff at the Trust have been using larger and more elaborate water bottles for months. It began when Joe from planned giving started using a bright green, extra-large water bottle. Major gifts officer Wendy followed a few days later with an even larger blue bottle with a red-striped straw. The water bottles began to become larger, more colourful and with more eccentric straws and openings.

“I don’t know how it happened,” said CEO Sulu Snidely as she sipped on her four foot tall water bottle through an enormous two foot long bendable straw. “Soon, people were using shopping carts to carry their water bottles around. I had to put a stop to it.”

The water bottle craze went up and down. One week staff brought in all steel water bottles. The next it was see-through bottles. Another week saw green-coloured bottles. Then they started getting larger. Near the end, some staff were lugging 64 ounce jugs around, even though they weighed nearly 50 pounds.

“I just wanted to have a nicer jug than that smug fundraiser Wendy. She was flouting her autographed Motley Crew all-metal water bottle with super-bendy straw and I just couldn’t take her smugness. So, I got a 50 pound jug,” said Turner Lerner, manager of communications. “I sprained my back and had to take a week off work. It hurt, but I know it hurt Wendy even more. And that made it somehow okay.”

The new rules now restrict all water bottles to a standard, semi-transparent blue size with no bendy straw or cup. While staff have been following the new policy, some are upset about it.

“I spent $150 on fancy water bottles and now I can’t use them at work. What am I going to do with them,” asked Zelma Fasciitis, a major gifts officer.

Snidely says the new rules won’t impact the new office coffee cup craze which has seen staff bring in ever-larger and more exciting coffee cups in the past week.

“That’s different,” she said sipping coffee from her 20 ounce coffee cup in the shape of a lion. “That’s just individual expression.”

In a related story, the Trust has called in health experts to determine why staff are urinating so much. Snidely says think it could be related to the new air conditioning system they recently installed.