A Trivial Gauntlet

For those of us with jobs where we don’t have to wear name tags, this is the time for the company holiday party. It is an occasion where we can eat, drink, relax, and temporarily forget what tools most of our coworkers are.

Kick up your heels, but not too far. We’ve all heard heard the cautionary tales about how excessive drinking and going berserk at these events can cost you your job. So if you get fired for grabbing random asses, dancing naked on the bar, and taking a shit in the CEO’s martini, don’t say you’ve never been warned.

Are these take-heed stories really necessary? Perhaps they are for the kind of people who need to be reminded that having sex with a light socket is not a good idea. For the rest of us, they’re good for a chuckle and that’s about it.

Not that this stops finger-wagging members of the press from jumping into the fray. Gosh darn that demon rum, they tell us in op-ed fluff every year. It can make a festive occasion your downfall.

OK, maybe getting completely hammered is inadvisable, but an evening of sobriety is no picnic either. I’ve attended enough holiday parties to know that any moment, the sales guys may start wearing their neckties like headbands and forming a conga line. You try being subjected to that without a few drinks in your system. One year, the president of the company where I worked decided to treat the employees to a 45-minute slide show of his children. It was only a steady supply of liquor that kept us from lynching him.

Of course, there are a few guidelines to acknowledge when boozing with coworkers:

  • A DUI will not stay a secret for long. Take a cab home.
  • Your immediate supervisor does not want to know what you really think of him or her.
  • Caution: Objects in beer goggles are fatter than they appear.

That’s it. Seasoned drinkers don’t have to worry about running amok after a few cocktails. We got that out of systems years ago. The amateurs are the real menace. Leave us responsible lushes alone.

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