This story takes place back in the 90s just south of the North Pole at CFS Alert. The various shifts and sections were also a blend of a club/frat with initiations, meetings, etc. The buildings were mostly the same as what you see in videos of Antarctic bases. This was pre-internet, one phone call home a week, no TV or radio except VHS for TV and CDs for local radio. Every common room had a full bar plus there was a Jr Ranks Mess, Snr Ranks Mess, Curling rink. So most people either drank or went to the gym to keep occupied.
I had just arrived for my first 6 month tour as a Private and it was my second day on station. We were on days off when I entered the common room and discovered our shift had kidnapped the station CO. He was propped up at the bar secured with at least one roll of cling film and a drink with a straw in front of him. The story goes he had missed the group photo as an honorary member of our house. So it was decided as punishment to kidnap him.
The problems started with the negotiations as this was a Friday afternoon and all parties involved were drinking. A ransom note was sent to the Officers Quarters demanding a case of beer for the return of the CO. The reply consisted of an overnight bag with the CO's pyjamas and toothbrush.
The drinking and negotiations continued. Finally it was agreed that if a case of beer was included they would allow us to return the CO. So a sled was grabbed and the CO and a case of crappy beer was loaded up. Everyone then trekked over pulling the CO to the Officers Quarters and the party continued.
That was my introduction to the culture of the station and set the tone for the remaining 6 months.