Last year, I was caught off guard by Christmas gifts from people in the office.
I had not received any gifts in past years while working on the wards.
This year, I planned ahead. I bought fuzzy socks on sale. In bulk. Wrapped them nicely, with bows, ribbons, and gift tags. Lots of spares to hand out to people I purposely push out of my mind.
I have been giving them out, gushing with warm Christmas spirit, not caring if they don't celebrate Christmas or some other holiday or anything. "Merry Christmas to you and your family! This is just a little something to let you know that I appreciate your teamwork and care for our patients all year long."
Most recipients are shocked.
I think that an important part of this strategy is to give my gifts out early to ensure that people will have time to get a gift for me. It's not done out of greediness. It's to promote the aura and appearance that there is some kind of mutually respective work relationship going on.
The results are paying off this week in the form of gifts for me. Mostly alcohol. I'll take it. I'd rather that they start acting like professional, rational, well-mannered individuals, but this will never happen. This part I learned already.