Thursday, November 15, 2007

New Study Finds Learning Improves With Alcohol

Well no, not that I know of anyway. But I assume that's at least some of the material that the organizers of my recent consulting course must have read up on before laying out the plans. The course is probably best described as a corporate prison camp set at a top notch resort with great food and tons of booze. (I actually was going to use the term "corporate Auschwitz" before realizing I wasn't 100% sure how to spell "Auschwitz", not to mention the cultural insensitivity inherent in such phrasing. And we all know how sensitive I usually am.) Here's how the whole thing panned out:


After a game of Circle of Death in Kangaroo Valley the night before, let's just say I wasn't feeling quite so fresh when it was time to wake up at 7am so that we could leave at 8am to get me to the airport for my 11am flight.

I arrived at the vineyard near Melbourne around 2pm, and we pretty quickly got into the course. There was also plenty of free booze available starting at dinner that evening, but my hangover helped me fight off any temptation and I was in bed by 10pm.


Woke up feeling much better and would have loved to enjoy the amazing weather and the beautiful vineyard...but ended up indoors all day for the course. Which would have been much more painful if it weren't for the fact that we were served FIVE meals a day (breakfast, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner), every single day. Anyone who knows me will understand how easily I am swayed by a constant supply of food.

This was also the day when we finished early so that we could go to a wine tasting, then a three course dinner, and finally an open bar.

Now I realize most of you won't believe me, but I really was one of the first people to head back to my room and make sure I was asleep by 11. While I realize this doesn't really fit well with my character, I was aware from various reports that I would have to be awake and working well into the night the following day, and I figured there was no reason to make that any more painful than it was already going to be. Others were not so wise...


We reviewed a work character profile that was done for each of us (basically a personality quiz) which, not surprisingly, told me I was an asshole. It also gave away that my team of 7 people for the course cast study had intentionally been put together because we were ALL assholes who were pushy, impatient, and convinced we always knew better than everyone else.

We then moved into the next stages of the case study, and around midnight I gave up and told my team to just leave me a list of things I could work on at 6am, so I could utilize my annoying morning person-ness instead of sitting around falling asleep in front of everyone else. I also may have finished off a bottle of the white wine from the collection of booze they made available to us around 9pm onwards.


We woke up, finished off our final presentation, and despite getting off to a rocky start, we clearly kicked everyone's ass in the final "client presentation", so it all paid off. And finally, around 4pm, it was time to head back to the airport and fly back to Sydney.

To be honest I kind of loved the whole course, but I'm glad to be back home now, even if I am several pounds fatter than when I left. And I hope this didn't bore you too much (as I'm sure I tend to do when I'm a little too responsible) but I thought you deserved a detailed explanation of my absence from the blog for a week. And if it makes you feel any better, it looks like I will be drunk for the next 4 days. Party on.

No comments: