We all know that shameless showing off is a prerequisite for many City workers, and never was it more in abundance than on New Year's Eve.
It all started with the invitations (mine arrived by courier) – a custom-made 24-carat gold iPod nano, containing a video invite. Quite impressive. Only the night that followed reeked of a mixture of desperation and arrogance.
The host is the number-one show-off at work, so the dozen of us from the office who were invited knew we were in for a night to remember.
And that was confirmed immediately upon arrival at his country home. As we stepped out of our taxis, he greeted us in front of a car covered in a white sheet. He held a flute of champagne in one hand and a Montecristo in the other. If that wasn't OTT enough, there were two bikini-clad girls getting jiggy by his side. In between swigs and puffs he extended a chubby-handed welcome to join him at the unveiling of his new car, promising a prize for the person who guessed the make and model.
Of course, the host was so desperate to impress, he'd propped up a yellow board with a prancing horse on it to give us a clue that the car might well be a Ferrari.
The party took an impressive turn with goody bags containing watches. Chanel J12s for the ladies and Breitlings for the men, although a fellow guest wasn't impressed: "How disappointing, I've already got one," she whined before tossing it into her handbag, and whispering to her mate that she'd sell it on eBay.
Host Man was on top form and insisted on treating us all to a ride in his Sherman tank. He spent the entire journey from his house to the pub (travelling on his own land) inviting us to guess how much his bonus was. After upsetting a few locals by flashing his cash, it was back home for the grand car unveiling where the real fun began.
The host had us all gathered around the car, hand poised on the cover when a sudden wind whipped up and ruined the so-called surprise. The sheet went flying as a helicopter landed on the lawn. Out stepped a man (who we all knew) dressed in a ridiculous gorilla suit to steal our show-off's thunder shouting: "You'd do well to remember there's always a monkey further up the tree than you."
Clearly, the whole party had been organised so our host could show off his new Ferrari. His only problem was he didn't reckon on the arrival of an even bigger show-off than him.