Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Tuesday, March 5

Gapers Block

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Sky / December 2, 2004 10:39 AM

Oh, the parties. I average about 10 or so. My favorite is going to my parent's friends' annual shindig, and once again being the odd one out...youngest and ever so I decided to sit in the corner and chug the red wine. After the party, my parents friends serve a xmas dinner at a homeless shelter, and I of course went and was sauced as ever and ended up having a really important conversation with a guy that had "sexy" tatooed to his arm. Afterwards, we went to yet another party, where i managed to drink another bottle of red myself...and remember staying after my parents left...their friends driving me home...I know I was laying on my garage floor drunk thing i know, my mom is waking me up and i'm on the couch sitting up with my hat, gloves and coat on, saying Jeshush Christ, over and over. And alas the next day was New year's eve and i was too hung over to go out with my friends, because i got too hammered with my parent's friends and the homeless.

Andrew / December 2, 2004 10:48 AM

I get invites to 6-10, actually go to 3-4. That doesn't include my office party, though, which consists of pot-luck lunch in the conference room. Woo.

jima / December 2, 2004 11:16 AM

Usually only two parties, the office party and the family party. The office party is held in a downtown Chicago hotel, and is usually an excuse for our company's employees (150-200 in attendance) to dress their best. Of course, the idea of the best clothing varies wildly among people, from formal dress to hoochie mama.

The grub at the office party is usually first rate, although the list of desserts usually includes something called "Yule Log", which as far as I can tell is ice cream, or cake, or chocolate, or possibly meat, in the shape of a log. (Because who doesn't like to eat a big hunk of wood for dessert?) This item has shown up on the menu for the last three years running, and it's become a bit of a running joke among my co-workers. "Gonna fill up on YULE LOG this year?" Maybe this year I'll actually sample some of it....

Andrew / December 2, 2004 11:32 AM

Ah, the Yule Log. It's a traditional French holiday dessert. It's not as bad as it sounds -- basically an ice-cream roll with light-brown icing.

paul / December 2, 2004 11:52 AM

The really good yule logs have marzipan mushrooms on them.

I don't go to half as many parties as I used to, so I wind up eating most of the cookies I make as presents by myself.

I did go to one party last year where they requested I make 'anatomically correct' gingerbread men.

Steve / December 2, 2004 12:04 PM

I go to a mere handful in my dotage, though the girl and I are hosting a party this year.

The mandatory one is the killer: we have to go to our VP's house for our work party each year. Everyone crowds onto a chartered bus around 3 and starts slamming beers, and then it's off to the North Shore for four hours of little fun. Employees only; no spouses or partners allowed.

There's a fairly involved meal served, but nowhere to sit. The open bar almost makes it bearable ('cept for the lack of liquor), while the neverending white elephant gift exchange (with unlimited gift steals) triggers your fight-or-flight reflex.

And in the past year, this veep has fired my best bud in the department, my boss, and my next-office neighbor (that's three people, not one). When will bosses learn not to bring their morale problems home with them?

w c / December 2, 2004 12:51 PM

Generally, I start partying on Thanksgiving and don't stop until January 2nd. I start drinking and remain in a haze, at work, at school, at church for christmas mass, through midnight on new years and then sleep until the 2nd. Somewhere in my drunken, dizzy stupor, I manage to buy a gift or two (for my designated drivers). This way, no matter how many parties I actually attend, I can't remember them, while simultaneously celebrating Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Years continuously without stopping to eat or sleep properly.

So technically, I only attend one on-going party, but there is insufficient data available as to real number.

Mike / December 2, 2004 1:43 PM

The parties I go to every year vary. One New Year's, I went to a three-story house party in Minneapolis which had somewhere around 10 kegs and five DJs. Going by the $10 entry fee, the people that threw it counted about 200 people over the course of the night.
On the other end of the spectrum, I spent one New Year's in the kitchen of a person I barely know in suburban Minneapolis drinking rum and playing with her dog with about 5 or 6 other people. I fell asleep on her couch and woke up to her brother's blind wife accidentally "staring" at me. I said hello and she practically jumped out of her chair with surprise. To top it off, I had the worst hangover of my life.

Jake / December 2, 2004 1:58 PM

A friend of mine at the tail end of a Christmas party (on a bet) drank the remnants of a crockpot of cocktail weenies. You know how everybody's hanging out in the kitchen after everybody else has left except for the real drinkers who can't stand to leave a party before all the booze is gone? Well, when you go to a party at a wine distributor's house, the booze is never all gone. So there he was, pouring the cocktail weenie juice down his throat, scalding hot, gushing down his cheeks onto the floor. He finished it, set the crockpot back down on the counter, collected his winnings, and immediately turned and threw up into the sink. And then the party was over and we all went home.

Shylo / December 2, 2004 2:32 PM

One company I worked for rented out the House of Blues, and provided us with an open bar. Afterwards, we ended up at a house party down the street. I was dark-drunk and got involved in a conversation with a newlywed couple. I convinced them that my beloved had just died and that I would "never love again." And then I ate a bunch of M & Ms and lost an earring.

karen / December 2, 2004 3:42 PM

3 to 5 functions per year.
I wouldn't miss my work xmas party for anything.
priceless entertainment!

there's usually...

one good injury (dance related)
one odd pairing of co-workers making out in front of everyone. (really alarming when it's your boss and a new hire)
one person barfing anywhere but the toilet
good clean fun!

plus, the booze is free.

photovox / December 2, 2004 4:44 PM

This is my first year out of college, so I haven't been to any parties yet, although there are two scheduled. One of them is my very first office party, which I hope to gain many stories from to tell next year.

In college I was in a fraternity and we'd do a gift exchange/secret santa each holiday, most of the gifts being of the tongue-in-cheek-self-stimulation-assistance categoy. One year I got some "Palm Oil" and a 98 Degrees (you know, the boy band) poster.

Leo / December 2, 2004 4:59 PM

I'd say I usually attend two or so.

I made the mistake one time of getting out on the dance floor at an office party to show off the two disco moves I know during Stayin' Alive. Before I realized what was going on, my office mates had reverently cleared the dance floor. I became known as "John Travolta" around the office, and was forced to repeat this performance at every subsequent office party before I left the job. I would try, usually in vain, to escape outside for a smoke even though I don't smoke to avoid embarrassing myself again. Somehow most of my workers never caught on to the fact that I am an awful, awful dancer and that what I was doing was abundantly lame.

Erica / December 3, 2004 9:19 AM

I usually end up at four holiday parties. Last year's New Year's party was really fun. My friend arranged for a few SUV-type limos to haul a few teams of our drunken 20-something friends around the city on a scavenger hunt that my friend worked really hard to organize. It was super creative and fun (though sometimes the riddles were a bit much). It took us as far south as the original Billy Goat and as far North as Diversy Rock n Bowl. My favorite was Marie's Riptide Lounge. We were the only people in there and the bar treated us really wonderfully. Marie is a riot. We ended up watching fireworks downtown by Navy Pier. By that point, there was a web of silly string strung across the cab and empty beer cans everywhere. I was hunched over half asleep and drunk ass. No one really knows which team won because everything was so chaotic and drunken. The next day, we ate at Golden Apple on Lincoln where I visited the bathroom a few times. Happy 2004, right?

Brandy / December 3, 2004 9:55 AM

2002 was a notable year.

Lisa / December 4, 2004 4:33 PM

I used to go to a lot more parties when I was married. Since I got divorced, everyone chose my fragile fragile ex who can't handle being in the same room as I am, despite the fact that he has been in a solid relationship for the past two years... not that I'm bitter...

Now I go to my work party... which I have to pay to attend... and two or three others hosted by my friends who didn't know or didn't like my ex.

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