Shhhh, listen… Can you hear those year-end invites rolling in? That’s right, the silly season is almost upon us. If you want to save your energy for a few rippers, or just want to avoid making a fool of yourself at the office do, here’s how to drink a bit less, and stay fabulous.
Step 1: Don’t pregame
Yes, we all know that the whole point of pregaming is so that you arrive in party mode, basking in the warm glow of your 500ml personality. However, if you want to keep it tidyish, it goes without saying that you should arrive 100% sober.
Step 2: Be fashionably late
No one wants to be the first to arrive, right? Wrong … for an office party anyway. If the festivities start at 3pm, you can bet your hipflask not many colleagues will still be fiddling with that spreadsheet at 3.15. (There are snacks to consider, after all.) So keep yourself busy for at least 30 minutes. Check in with clients, clean your desktop, or better yet go ahead and freshen up so you arrive looking amazing.
Step 3: Order a thirst quencher
Invariably, you’ll get offered a drink on arrival (if not, you need to rethink your friends). Announce that you’re simply dying of thirst, and must have something cold, tall and booze-free before diving into a cocktail.
Step 4: Eat up
If you were ever looking for an excuse to hit the snack table, this is it. Grab a plate, fill it with nibbles, and find some friendlies to chat to while you line that stomach. Needless to say, you’ll have to put your drink down while you munch, so this step gets bonus points.
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Step 5: Order top shelf
Skip the nasty box wine and other party freebies, and cough up at the cash bar (or come prepared if it’s a BYO event). You’ve made the decision to drink less on this occasion, so spoil yourself with the best you can afford. That Bruichladdich or Bisquit you dream about? Go get it.
Step 6: Slow your roll
Remember, the object of the exercise is to NOT get sloppy drunk. You’ve ordered something fancy, so savour it. If it helps, take a moment to consider the craftsmanship that went into creating whatever it is you’ve chosen to imbibe, and send out a silent thank you.
Step 7: Stay hydrated
Make sure you have a glass of water next to you at all times, and finish – and fill – it before ordering your next drink. Note, this won’t dilute the alcohol, but it will slow you down and keep you from wasting precious festive-season time crying into your toilet.
Step 8: Fool your friends
While not offering someone a drink is plain rude, so is forcing one on them, and if anyone gives you a hard time about drinking less, go ahead and scratch them off your Christmas-card list. That said, if you want to avoid peer pressure, order something that seems to be boozy, but isn’t. Here, it’s all about the glass. Sparkling water will pass as vodka tonic if it’s in a tumbler with ice and lemon.
May the force be with you.