Monday, August 15, 2005

Oh Holy Afternoon

Since I have been overly generous in relaying the stories of my drunk friends I thought it only fair to share with you a wonderful tale of my own intoxication. This weekend a friend and I were chatting and we recalled the lovely drunk afternoon we shared a couple years ago. Yes, I know it is not the most current of stories, but I think once you read it you will realize that it is really quite timeless.

So let’s set the scene, shall we? We are at the company Christmas party. It is around 11 a.m. Now, any intelligent person will tell you that either one of those facts should be enough to keep a person from drinking themselves stupid. But as we all know, I don’t really need to drink to be stupid.

Myself and a couple of my friends were a little late to the party so we had to sit at the “leftover” table. You know, the table where all the “leftover” people sit. Cause they aren’t cool enough to be invited to sit at any of the other tables. Each table was set for about 8 people, but our leftover table only ended up having the three of us and two other people. Oh, and two bottles of wine.

Already, we were going to get more wine than the other tables, because there were fewer of us at our table. But our distribution became even more generous when the VP, who was sitting at our table, declined any wine. This, in turn, caused the two newer employees who were sitting at our table to decline wine as well. Because they were still in their kiss-ass phase.

One of my friends who was sitting with me had gotten a new job and was leaving our company in a matter of days. She was well beyond her kiss-ass phase and transitioning nicely into her screw-you phase. So she started to drink. And because I am a loyal and supportive friend (and as we mentioned earlier, not too intelligent) I began to drink with her.

At the time of this party I was working in the accounting department, so I’ll help you out with the math on this one. Two bottles of wine for two girls. And you also have to add in the fact that I drink, literally, about twice a year. And I’d never drank wine before. And I had no real preference between red and white. So I drank them both.

Anyone who has ever been to one of these boring-ass parties will tell you that a good deal of the time is spent by people giving stupid speeches about pointless things like employee spirit and team goals. Whatever. Pass me the wine. Let me tell you, wine makes those speeches a lot more tolerable. I can’t believe I never thought of it before.

After the speeches, during the casual conversation portion of the program, I began to wander the crowd, striking up many a conversation with many a people I can’t remember right now. I can, however, remember a couple nice people offering me a chair and helping to straighten my halo.

Oh, I forgot to mention I was wearing a headband that held a halo above my head. The saddest part about the halo is that I put it on before I was even remotely intoxicated. Which is why I might as well drink, at least then I have an excuse for my ridiculous choices.

The party began to wind down and everyone started heading home. Except me and my wine drinking buddy. As tables emptied we went around and grabbed the unfinished wine bottles off every table. And we drank them. Because we are wholeheartedly against waste of any kind. It’s bad for the environment and stuff. I think.

Eventually the hotel staff had to ask us to leave the banquet room because they had another party they had to set up for, and because everyone else had been gone for over an hour. These people obviously didn’t share in our holiday spirit.

Before we left we gathered our basic necessities: the centerpiece, two bottles of wine and an umbrella. The center piece was an adorable little thing. It was a styrofoam Christmas tree that had 200 or so unwrapped peppermint candies glued to it. It was very Martha Stewart-y. And very poorly designed for rainy weather.

It was pouring outside. Like sideways rain pouring. As we walked back to the office my friend was having a very inebriated battle with her uncooperating umbrella. The wind was randomly flipping the umbrella in and out as my friend continued to try to keep it over us. By this time we were so wet I really didn’t see the point. I was just wondering how hard it is to get peppermint stains out of your clothes.

We got back to the office and had to gather all of our things for the walk home. During our time at the office we collected goodbye balloons, a gift basket full of empty boxes (because the friend thought the boxes were soooooo cute), a bag of oranges (from a co-worker’s tree), and both of our work bags. we added these items to our two bottles of wine, and the centerpiece we were already carrying.

If you will please picture with me now. The two of us stumbling down the busy downtown streets in sideways rain carrying all that crap. Really not attracting that much attention to ourselves at all as I carried a balloon bouquet, oranges and the centerpiece while my friend continued to battle her umbrella while carrying her gift basket and the wine. I loved that she wouldn’t give up on the umbrella, despite the fact that it was now scientifically impossible for us to get any wetter. And you know what happens to gift boxes when they no longer have contents in them? They become VERY light. And they fly away. But they are so cute they must be picked up. Even if it means dropping 3 other things in an effort to retrieve said gift box.

I’m not sure if I’ve ever laughed so hard.

So as we were doing our very slow stumble/go back and pick stuff up/stop to untangle my hair from the melting centerpiece a very nice man pulled up beside us. He was an employee in our office. He was one of the kindest men I’ve ever known. But he was also very religious and all about leading a blessed life and all that. He rolled down his window and said, “Do you girls need a ride home?”

Although we were each three bottles of wine deep we were still able to look at ourselves, then look at this nice, pure man and say, “Oh no, we’re fine! Thanks though! See you Monday!” I would have much rather stumble the rest of the way home than get into this man’s car and try to hold on a conversation that didn’t send me directly to hell. As he drove away I was hoping that the halo I was wearing had distracted him from the red wine mustache on my face.

I really don’t know why I don’t drink more often…


Patricia said...

oh to have been a fly on the wall.
better yet, to have been invited into the circle of
wine guzzling
orange carrying
box dropping
umbrella fighting
centerpiece carrying
angels such as you.

Chocodile man said...

Ha ha ... the leftover sounds like the kid's table for grownups, plus wine. NOW I know why you don't drink very often...

Heather said...

You left out the "reason why to drink at 11 in the afternoon" part -- sober and in bed by 10 pm. Only after the hours of sickness and spinning celings, of course.

dawn said...

Oh, God.

The spinning ceilings were the worst.

Nothing like drinking yourself sick before Oprah is even over.

Rochelle said...

I remember this! You were the talk for a while... Dear Art. What a sweet, religious man. BLECK!