The Party Season

images1In these tough economic times, salaries and bonuses are likely to be trimmed severely, especially those companies that are struggling to make a profit or those desperately trying to improve their balance sheets. Company Christmas parties have been shelved, at least for this year to save expenses. Our company is no exception. Every year we hold a Christmas dinner dance at a first class hotel but this year, it is cancelled. Now several groups withinΒ our company are organizing Christmas parties and I have been invited to four of them ! The bad news is, the revelers have to foot the bill so every attendee must contribute money πŸ™‚ Dang, 4 parties is too much for me to attend, let alone the availability of time but I decided to attend two parties – my own department’s party and our division party.

Our business partners also invite us to parties organized for their customers like us. One account rep had been calling me up to confirm my attendance at their Christmas bash. Last Friday I received an email from him informing me that the party had been cancelled. Yikes, that was a bit embarassing don’t you think? Before you circulate invitations, you bloody make sure that you work out the finances ! I didn’t bother to ask why the cancellation but clearly it was done haphazardly and in poor taste methinks.

Consumer spending is anticipated to be down this holiday season. But seeing the malls packed these days, I’d be curious to know the decline percentage. Stores have been marking down their items so attractively that as a buyer, you’d wonder if you’ll see these prices after the season. Today I saw a Sergio Leone original DVD pack with 4 of Clint Eastwood’s famous spaghetti western movies for $29 bucks with a voucher of $15 for gas as freebie. How can you possibly beat that? πŸ˜‰ I’m quite sure more crazy deals are in the offing for those who plan to do their shopping on the 24th πŸ™‚

THE WINNING CAMERA- Canon SD500 Scores a Pacquaio-like Upset

canon1I hate lugging around with a camera bag. Seriously. I’ve been really wanting a small but powerful compact camera, one that I can stick into my pocket and take quality pictures when a photo moment arises. I had been scoping out the Panasonic Lumix DMC TZ5 as my Xmas present to myself but my brain keeps telling me – “you don’t need the darn thing kid. You have a bigger camera and you didn’t even learn all it’s functions yet”. Alright πŸ™‚ Β Just as I was about to can the whole idea, my craving had been rekindled when the 2008 Global Metro Photo Challenge in Toronto was won by a diminutive point and shoot camera, a Canon SD500 . The themeΒ of the contest was Urban Jungle. Β Man, when you think that there were 55,000 entries from all over the world the winΒ is Β truly aΒ gargantuan upset. Β An aspiring young photographer – totally low budget with his little point and shoot camera and plastic $20 tripod waits for hours to take a shot of the tram car in the early morning hours to create the winning shot. Check the amazing story here.Β  One heck of a great win really. For his effort the winner gets $2000 cash and a trip to Paris plus a spanking newΒ Nikon 700D camera worth $5,000. Now that is a real dandy camera. You would definitely need a pretty decent knapsack to lug it around πŸ™‚





37 Responses

  1. lots of people are spending less. the cancelled party was such a sad news. one thing i wish is really to have a dslr soon. camera’s are enticing.

  2. Hmmmm….wonder where will AIG employees are doing their xmas party?!

    BYOB is always the american way so, they’re used to it.

    Great commercial, hehe….should be on cable or the three regular networks, ABC, NBC and CBS. It could jolt the economy! Cheers to you and season’s greetings to all!

  3. Natez1 – our Christmas party has been downgraded venue wise. We still managed to have one this year.

    Retailers prefer to dump inventory than to get stuck with it. That’s for sure.

    I don’t think a credit card company would dare air this kind of ad . Green but really funny hehe πŸ™‚

  4. our christmas party is still on schedule. i have yet to find my mask for the masquerade party. πŸ˜€

  5. Our company is still having its Christmas Party at a hotel in Manhattan. However, it will be a toned down affair as compared to previous years. As a cost-cutting measure, Company executives who reside outside of New York will no longer be asked to fly over and attend the party.

    Retailers are having crazy deals over here too. Just last Saturday, I bought a winter jacket for $50 when it originally cost $178. Nice. πŸ™‚

  6. Every company is saving money nowadays. I love to shop 3 days before Christmas. It’s a rush but the deals are amazing.

    LOL on the video. It’s a big joke πŸ™‚

  7. With Christmas shopping, we do what we normally do each year. We make up a list and set aside a budget. We never ever go over that budget, so it elimates the temptation to get anything that’s not on the list. And also, most of our shopping are done around Thanksgiving time so all we think about when Dec comes is checking out the malls or big box chains for deals we might want later πŸ™‚

    At work, the hospital doesn’t pay for any Christmas party. And we never did any party. WE do potluck lunch though. This year the doctors are getting all the entrees. I’m fine with no Christmas party as long as no one loses his/her job around here. Thankfully, we have not heard of this happening yet.

    I have DSLR with tripod, but a majority of my photos in the other blog were taken by a point and shoot canon, and a ton of them are taken inside a moving vehicle.

  8. Dong – we’ve been used to the cancellation. I remember in the recession of the early 1990’s we also cancelled the X mas party. As long as may trabaho pa, ayos lang hehe πŸ™‚

  9. TruBlue – hard to justify spending when the company is on a string of quarters of losses. No parties, no bonuses, no increases – sounds gloomy doesn’t it ? 😦

    Well, methinks the ad isn’t fit for the TV. The language is a bit too much but I agree it’s funny hehe πŸ™‚

  10. Natez1 – I think retailers would prefer to earn lesser as long as they get rid of inventory. I heard on the radio that the lowly “dollar stores” are making a killing this season.

    Good you still have your Xmas party this year πŸ™‚

  11. Panaderos – good that you still have your party scheduled. I bet your execs won’t be coming on their private jets to the party eh? hehe πŸ™‚

    One heck of a deal. I also find myself buying stuff just because of the darn price !

  12. Mari – you better find that mask quick !

    Last year we had a special casino set up for staff at the hotel venue of our party. Of course the money was fake but it did allow you to exchange them for gifts. Amazing how things can turn around in a matter of months 😦

  13. Irrealis – hmmm… you’re what I can call a pressure shopper. Well, I guess you don’t mind the crowd πŸ™‚

  14. Ewok – the docs buy the entrees? hehe.. That I think is a fair deal πŸ˜†

    Agree – who really cares about the Xmas party if ome loses his job?

    A DLSR is great when you purposely go out to take pics but when you’re simply bumming around, a small and powerful camera fits in the jacket pocket fits the bill for me πŸ™‚

  15. True, this crisis is felt globally. Every year our company celebrates Eid Al Fetr (the end of fasting in Ramadan) . They usually invites all senior staff and their family from different projects. But this year we never received any invitation nor heard there was any celebration. : (

  16. its ok to join parties for as long as you don’t overspend..pwede pa kaya yun?hehe!

  17. Blogusvox – I guess everybody is feeling the economic pinch these days. I hope the feeling doesn’t last very long and the economy with rebound sooner than later 😎

  18. Cliffnotes – you bet. With parties with family and friends in line this holiday season it would be a bit too much to attend all the parties in the office – time and money wise 😯

  19. The company I’m at has also cancelled the Christmas party. Good thing I attended twice when I got the chance over the past several years.

  20. Wil – for us, it happened in the past and it’s happening again. It’s kind of a cycle really but when the economy gets better, we will be back to the spending game once more πŸ™‚

  21. Speaking of parties, I just attended one last night, and I’m happy that I only have to attend one official party and that’s it. πŸ™‚

    I so want a DSLR, but perhaps I should try to work magic on the point-and-shoot camera I do have now. Thanks for sharing that story, that was really inspiring. πŸ˜€

  22. oh my but at least you still had a party even when you had to pay LOL diba dito sa pinas ganiyan ang mga party may bayad talaga LOL

  23. That account rep. and the company he/she represents made a major booboo with that party thing. To say that they don’t have a foresight is an understatement.


    I always have my Canon point-and-shoot camera in my bag. It’s pretty portable, and it takes quality videos as well. An important tool for bloggers/YouTube and Flickr users.


    That YouTube video is hilarious. I didn’t see that coming! Hahaha.

  24. Talking about parties, I finished baking a billion brownies for the five school parties I recently attended (pot luck style) — thank God! Just one more party to go. That means more brownies to bake. πŸ™‚


    I remember our newspaper company’s Christmas parties. There were always lots of food and appearances as well as performances of “artistas” like Aga Mulach, Regine Velasquez, Ogie Alcasid, Monique Wilson, and the like.

    Now that I’m here in CH, I kinda miss those bongga parties in the Philippines. Here, I’m always subjected to endless ‘Silent Nights’ — LOL.

  25. Good thing I don’t attend Christmas parties, at least I won’t miss it during these hard times, hehe.

    Man, I love that photo. It kinda reminds me of those old film noirs… dark and mysterious. This goes to prove that one does not need a high-end shooter to get a great shot, only good imagination.

  26. Kathy – at some point in time the death of the DSLR is imminent and with the new Micro Four Thirds system developed by Panasonic and Olympus which eliminates the mirror system used in the SLR technology has gone into full steam production. The challenge to the SLR draws closer, more so that in future the lenses used in SLR will be made compatible with the Micro Four Thirds technology. The Panasonic G1 the flag bearer of the Micro Four Thirds technology won the Camera of the Year Award for 2008. Its footprint is much smaller , features much more powerful and its user friendliness narrows the gap between professionals and beginners. We all know that this technology only gets better and in the future, smaller, powerful and intelligent cameras with expert system like features is the name of the game πŸ™‚

    check these out :

  27. Prinsesa – masarap ang libre of course… hehe but I don’t mind paying. Case in point in our dept party, we had a ball at our cafeteria when we had food catered and brought over and my Pinoy officemate brought his karaoke system. It was a blast – 30 of us throughly enjoyed the party… of course, the Pinoy singing power showed up .. there were 3 of us Pinoys who took the dubious honors that night hahaha… πŸ™‚ The party was a riot !

  28. Jayred – the cancellation was nakakahiya of course 😯

    LOL on the Silent Night parties πŸ™‚ Our dept party was a riot hehe πŸ™‚ Pinas parties are always fun. The entire Xmas season is party time back home πŸ™‚

    When I go on vacations, I carry the big camera but I like to have something smaller I can carry everyday but it better be powerful which means of course that it is not cheap that’s why up to now I’m still twirling my thumbs over it πŸ˜†

  29. Sngly – hehe.. good, so you’re not really missing anything πŸ™‚

    Right on – the film guys of the past are unbelievable. Nowadays with Picasa and Photoshop, many things are possible. But still, a top of the line camera and great skills can get you accolades and set you apart from the rest but that gap is narrowing with smarter cameras coming out nowadays.

  30. i personally think that it is in time of crisis that we need to spend more so that money can circulate. less spending means lesser production that may harm more workers.

    happy holidays by.

    p.s. the video is hilarious.

  31. Lawstude – so true but then companies are concerned about their profitability and consequently their stock price. It’s a really a vicious circle 😯

    Have a wonderful Xmas… party a lot… just be a little careful when you bring her home after the party hehe πŸ™‚

  32. Just passing by to greet you:

    Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year (I hope) to you and your family.

  33. Hey BW, happy holidays… speaking of… I still plan to do my shopping on January like what I did last year… =)

  34. Jeff- not a bad idea if you save money ! Hope you don’t mind if I move this comment over to my next post. Thanks πŸ™‚

  35. It’s really hard times bro. I just got my 13th month pay this afternoon and half of it is gone just in a day, with so many things to buy. Hope next year would be much better for all of us. Merry Xmas to you and your family.

  36. Major Tom – you gave me a clue on the title of my next post – “Post-Christmas Blues ” πŸ˜†

    Merry Christmas to you too πŸ™‚

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