What did my beloved readers get this season? Do let the Monkey with a Blue Rosette know if you had a good holiday. I say holiday, as I'm not allowed to mention Christmas; as you all know, I work at a directory enquiries call centre when not being political, and it fell to me to work the December 25 shift. Now I'd taken a few days off to go campaigning in Barmpotsby before the festive period, and then went on the booze cruise to Calais with the Barmpotsby Conservative Constituency Association. When I returned to work on 25 December, I became aware of the new company rules.
My boss had been monitoring one of my calls, and I had wished the caller a "Merry Christmas". I was pulled aside and warned that if I said it again, I would be up on a disciplinary, because of the new rules. "What new rules?" I said. The new rules that we weren't to mention Christmas to callers, in case we offended them if they were not Christian. How can we offend them? I asked. I know people of different religions who celebrate Christmas, not because of believing in Christ, but rather enjoying the holiday as a chance for love, caring, thinking of others and being with family. Ah, my boss said, but someone of a different religion might get offended and we don't want to take that risk.
I had been unaware of the rules. The only advise my boss could give regarding that was to ensure I remained in contact with work on my days to be aware of any updates. If we must insist on greeting them, we must use the politically neutral "Season's Greetings" or "Happy Holidays". Blimey.
Later that day, when a caller was ringing in to get the Vodafone helpline to activate a new phone she'd received for Christmas, it slipped my mind and I wished the caller a "Happy Christmas". My boss overheard this, and now I'm on a warning after my disciplinary meeting today. This is political correctness gone mad, I said, but it didn't help. I am but a phone monkey in a call centre.
So, let me take this opportunity to advise one and all via my blog that I wish you all a MERRY CHRISTMAS, whichever section of society you belong to, and whether or not you choose to celebrate Christmas.