I won’t bore you with the run-down of my day, but I will say this: It was long, and the only highlight was my whopping $24.00 lunch. That’s right–$24.00. (Just so you know, you can get a soup and weighted salad or a weighted salad and a drink in this town, open your wallet at the cashier and realize you don’t have enough money, at which time you whip out your debit or credit card. Yep, that expensive. So, my lunch today was really only about $9 or $10 more than I would pay. But, I’m using the “I’m freezing and I need extra sustenance for fuel” excuse, so lettuce leaves and canned tuna wasn’t going to cut it.) Okay, where was I? Yes, lunch. So, today was a splurge…lobster mac-n-cheese, a shrimp roll (that’s just shrimp sandwiched between a hotdog-looking bun) and a mini red velvet cupcake, which was not planned…but if you know what the city is like, there are food trucks all over the place! Temptation.
The Setting: My office. It’s almost the end of the day and I’m dreading the whole company holiday party. I can hear a flurry of activity in the hallways surrounding my office. People are zipping back and forth. I see most of the traffic heading in one direction, and they’re mostly women. This could mean one thing: The ladies’ room. They’re all heading to the bathroom to transform. Some brought in a change of clothes.
I keep looking at the clock on my computer and mobile phone. I realize I need to get going. I’m already late. I had all good intentions of stomping out of the office in my rockin’ 5-inch winter-must-have booties, but I thought: I don’t want to do this. It’s freezing outside, I have to walk two long blocks to the event space.
It just wasn’t worth it. I was also legitimately tired. I’d arrived in the city early in the morning for a meeting, and at this point, I was close to 12 hours in “work” mode.
Fast Forward: I get to the event space. The party is in full swing. The bar is crowded. I mean…packed. Think execs don’t like booze? Think again. Half of the people at the venue are in the bar area. The remaining employees are in the dinner area — most with a drink or two under their belts. (Slow down, folks.) I’m trying to figure out where to go, who to “hide” from, where to stop, and if I, too, need to get something with the word “overproof” in it. (I decided to keep it clean and stick to the non-alcoholic beverages for the night. You’re surprised, I’m sure.)
90 Minutes: That’s how long I lasted. I tried. I walked around. Chit-chatted with several people, laughed a number of times, shook hands…the only thing I didn’t do was kiss babies (like a politician). But an hour and a half was all I needed. I didn’t even find a seat. Maybe I knew I didn’t plan to stay? What I did know, once the dinner portion of the evening was deemed to be over, and the overhead lights were lowered and the disco lights came on, I felt things would come to a rapid and decisive end for me. And sure enough, once the DJs cranked up ‘The Twist’ (God bless Chubby Checker — is he still alive?), and the employees jumped on the dance floor, it was exit stage right. Over and out. I don’t know what came over me: I simply picked up my handbag, walked towards the bar with my glass, left it for the bartender, headed to the coat check, and left–out into the cold holiday streets.
I have to be honest: The venue was very festive, the organizers worked very hard on putting everything together. It really was very nice. But, company holiday parties are just not my thing.