CIPS dinner – only minor injuries, hotel largely undamaged

The CIPS dinner passed off largely peacefully yesterday, despite the fears of the London Mayor, Boris Johnson, who called for calm as hundreds of excited procurement executives circled the Hilton Hotel last night (trying to puzzle out how the revolving doors worked).

Casualty units were placed on standby throughout London, but injuries were limited to the usual foolhardy handful of CIPS Past Presidents who, as tradition demands, attempted to plant the CIPS flag on top of the Hilton's 29th floor flagpole. Kim, Shirley, Bola, Ian, Gerry, Ron, and Jane are expected to make full recoveries ...

The squadrons of riot police drafted in from as far afield as Belgravia seemed to do the trick as the diners assembled in Park Lane, blocking the traffic for a while with a barricade of procurement manuals, which were quickly cleared.

"We took that as being the usual buyers' high spirits rather than an act of calculated insurrection - we know these folk don't get out of the office much", said one of the police officers on duty.

But there was an ugly moment when the entire CIPS Utilities, Energy and Transportation Ethics and Policy Council Sub-Committee (South) challenged several Met Police dog handlers to "come and have a go if you're hard enough". But the threat of a challenge to their PQQ methodology seemed to diffuse the tension, and they dispersed to the bar to share a lager shandy.

Arrests were limited to a few account managers from the large construction firms who tried to gain access without tickets in order to distribute mysterious "brown envelopes" to the diners. Some of the salesmen attempted entry by disguising themselves as David Smith, the CIPS President, but the deception was quickly exposed when they were asked to sing "Jumpin' Jack Flash" to prove thier identity.... "But I paid a fortune for that hair styling" one was heard to scream as he was bundled into the police van.

The traditional Swinbank Medal Parade, when CIPS dignitaries run the gauntlet of guests who ritually pelt them with EU procurement regulations soaked in house wine was, as always, a highlight. And attendees heard that CIPS had been voted into third place in the "Best TV Drama or Mini-Series" category by the readers of TV Couch Potato magazine, for the CIPS-sponsored video aimed at students thinking of entering the profession -  "Ten reasons why supply chain risk is really cool and exciting, really it is, hepcats, yeah groovy man".

Finally, the President ended the evening with the traditional procurement rallying cry "let's go and get 'em" !

And the 600 guests streamed out into the night, ready to take on suppliers, recalcitrant stakeholders, unappreciative board members and suppliers' litiginous lawyers for another year.

(We'll have a more serious review of the event tomorrow...)

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Voices (4)

  1. Rachel Buckenham:

    But what we all want to know is did you enjoy fine wines on your table or did the Chateau Hilton Plonk de Plonk represent the best deal?

    1. The Guitar Man:


      From my vantage point, I can absolutely confirm that the Mr Smith (presumably a pseudonym) was partaking of copious amounts of the finest wine, followed by copious amounts of more fine wine and was last seen scouring deserted tables for left over Plonk de Plonk.

  2. MG Man:

    I have it on good authority that the gang leader of the London Teenage Alliance has written an article for tomorrow’s Daily Mail. They are extremely worried about procurement executives’ binge drinking and are asking MPs to consider what can be done to reverse the trend.

  3. The Guitar Man:

    You’re definately in the wrong job Peter! Not you are not a first rate CPO, buinessman and journalist but I think that soap opera script writing beckons. PS Let’s hope that an FOI on ‘what really happened on the night’ isn’t lodged.

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