Partying with your colleagues, office-sanctioned or not, is a tricky business.  Where to go, what to wear, what (and how much) to drink are all dependent on your particular office atmosphere, the seniority of the attendees, and the occasion. 

You may work in an office in which the merits of various class-A street drugs are debated on a weekly basis, or an office in which more than two glasses of champagne at a function is viewed as excessive.  The balance is a difficult one to strike; on the one hand, These People are your professional peers, and their judgment has a serious impact on your career.

On the other hand, you spend more time with These People than you do with your own family, and sometimes the daily stresses of that familiar camaraderie can best be relieved by getting totally mauled together.  You’re invited to share your own stories in the comments (and can submit for postings), but first, I reveal the details of my own recent, and potentially deadly, foray into the Office Party Abyss, as well as a US/UK comparison.

From the trenches of Saturday:

So, it’s Saturday, and I am in recovery from another typically brutal drinks night with my office.  As opposed to drinks in my US office, here in the UK, we go out with not only the implicit but also discussed understanding that we are going to get trashed.  It’s kind of refreshing, actually, because you can relax a little bit, and while you’re not expected to get wasted and make a fool of yourself (and should make every attempt to avoid tomfoolery), if you end up saying/doing something idiotic, you don’t have to spend the next 48 hours convinced that you’ve committed professional suicide and that hara-kiri is your last practical option because you can never step foot in work again.

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   Yeah. It’s just me here. Trixie & Kadisnky are working out-of-towns, Tailfeather is traipsing all about Europe hypnotizing men with her vagina, and SinRoo is either a.) enjoying some kind of freedom summer/summer of love thing while her classes are out or b.) she’s run away to join the Hillary Clinton 2012 campaign (already in progress). So it’s just me. Twiddling mah thumbs. Pissed off b/c I can’t find The Mighty Boosh on U.S. compatable DVDs and I keep forgetting to ask Mr. Panda if we have an all-region DVD player. Uh, and I don’t feel like writing about makeup, b/c the economy sucks and I don’t like the idea that my posts encite people to spend money. So, let’s just bullshit then, shall we? Here, I’ll give you a topic:

KARAOKE

Go!

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So, Saturday was a scorcher here in New York. Normally, I’d have abandoned my suffocating apartment for the weekend to head down to the beach (South Jersey represent!), as is my usual custom during summer weekends. But, my older sister – let’s call her J – is getting married this summer, and as one of two bridesmaids (the other one being my twin sister, K), it was up to us to host that obligatory bash known as the bachelorette party.

hen party
The thing is, J is not a typical bride in the fashion of, say, Eva Longoria, or any one of the other million celebrities who’ve gotten hitched in the past year. The J here doesn’t exactly stand for Jessica Alba, if you know what I mean. We needed to do something unique to her, her humor and spirit. So K and I settled on what we thought was a J-appropriate day of partying: some drinks and funny gifts at our apartment, a private karaoke room in K-town, and then, the finale: a VIP table at Caroline’s Comedy Club, where BJ Novak was performing standup. (more…)