Laurie Taylor column

December 13, 2002

From: Maureen
Subject: Christmas party
To: All members of department

This is to remind you that our Christmas departmental party will take place on Friday December 13 at 8pm in Bella Pizza. Although the owner expects this to be a busy night, I'm pleased to say that, following extensive negotiations, we have secured sole use of the alcove to the left of the men's toilets. I am now writing to ascertain your personal requirements for the event.

FOOD

My preferred choice of pizza is:

* Napoletana

* American hot

* Cappriciosa

* Poppletonia (N.B. 2p from the cost of this pizza goes towards the university's Library in Peril Fund)

SEATING

My preferred seating arrangement is:

* Random (determined on the night by drawing grissini)

* Left to right in order of seniority

* Anywhere but next to Dr Quintock

* As far as possible from the toilets

* All by myself at a separate table

AFTER DINNER

My preferred after-dinner activity is:

* Straight to Jack and Jill's disco

* Long rambling speech by Professor Lapping

* Sneaking away at the first clear opportunity

* Everyone back to my place except Dr Quintock

PAYMENT

My preferred method of payment is:

* Everyone pays an equal share of the final bill

* Senior lecturers and above pay double

* Heavy drinkers pay top-up fees

* I didn't have any pudding

TOPICS OF CONVERSATION

My preferred topic is:

* Bernard Williams on truth and truthfulness

* Social justice and the philosophy of the late John Rawls

* Stephen Pinker on heredity and environment

* Is the bursar gay?

See you on Friday. I can hardly wait!

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