Thursday, December 13, 2012

The General Rules of Christmas Etiquette, Borrowed

While drafting up a Holiday Etiquette post for the season, I stumbled upon this and decided to use it instead.  It's a bit "knotty" and pretty much nails the points of good etiquette for not just any party, but for most parties you'll attend well into 2013.  At the bottom is a playlist of the greatest Christmas music everyone should play at their party this year.

The General Rules of Etiquette Everyone Should Abide By At A Christmas Party This Season:
(Rules Subject to Change)

If Hosting, Pick a Date.  Not a person date, but a calendar date.  If you schedule a party on the same day as a friend, chances are everyone will go to his/her party because they are cooler than you.  Besides, I told you not to make it an ugly sweater party.  Those are lame.

If Attending, Know the Date.  Mark it on your calendar, planner, iPhone, iPad, tablet, post-it note.  Have your intern or pledge remind you.  Really there is no excuse nowadays on forgetting something.

Timing.  Being late is never good, especially if you're a girl.  No matter, 20 minutes late is one thing.  Being over an hour late is another.  Plan accordingly and recognize that this isn't a college mixer where arriving at the end of the night just to pick up the drunkest chick will go unnoticed.  Plus, you'll miss out on all of the really good hors d'oeuvres if you're late.

Black tie means black tie.  There is the famed ugly sweater party that we are all fucking sick of usually ends up with someone passed out on the lawn.  Then there is the formal Christmas party that hosts put great effort into making a pleasurable and upscale event, complete with champagne (not Andre) and maybe a pledge hired bartender.  Get dressed up and get after it, pinky up.  And no, a tuxedo t-shirt doesn't count (unless you're from Arkansas).

Bring a gift for the host or hostess.  Coming empty-handed to a cocktail party, especially a Christmas party, is extremely tacky.  Pickup a bottle of wine, some dessert or any small trinket of appreciation and you'll be set. Remember, a 12 of Buds is better than nothing so just play off of the "12 Days of Christmas" song and hand them out like candy.  *Tip: Go the extra step and tie a bow on them.

Thank your hosts.  Look them in the eye, say their names, and give them a heartfelt "thank you." Now is not the time to call your friend The Pisser by the college nickname you use on the sports field each weekend.  Class it up, asshole, this is a Christmas party.

Packing heat.  If you're carrying a flask, it's wise to share and it better be bourbon.  Bourbon is the most versatile holiday party drink spiker. Egg nog, mulled cider, a glass with just ice, after dinner coffee or hot chocolate.  Before you leave make sure to refill your flask for the after party.  It's the gift that keeps on giving...and taking.

Don't come to the party drunk.  Clearly you didn't listen to the rule above about sharing so hopefully you're playing Santa for the little kids (heaven forbid there are kids there).  No little child will understand, "Santa had too much of Rudolph's punch on the sleigh ride over."  If you can't distinguish between another kid, a divorcee, or a prior slam wanting to climb on you to beg for a new My Little Pony doll, grab some coffee or water.  *Tip:  If this is a Christmas party at work, chances are it is a divorcee so make sure you have some rubbers in the sack.  Ho Ho Ho.

Leave the stereo alone.  Unless you're the DJ or were asked to bring a playlist, leave the iPod in its dock.  Nobody likes your month old Drake and nobody likes your two month old Drake so don't even think about it.  Of course, there are always parties with a weak music scene and if you do find yourself at one of these, simply pull the host aside when they aren't busy and offer up some new jams fade the current song out by lowering the volume when no one is looking.  Then, put your crazy wild jams on at a low murmur until someone says, "hey I love this song!"  The volume will be cranked, champagne popped and you'll be Kirilling the shit out of babes before the track ends.  Chances are the host will be totally cool with it.  Claim ownership of the new music only after the host approves.

Mingle, mingle, mingle.  Every party has the potential to be the best party of all time.  To guys, the best party of all time means they took home a lady and brought her to brunch the next day.  To girls, the best party of all time means they perfectly matched the reds on the invitations to the reds on the cocktail napkins to the reds on the frosted gingerbread men's buttons.  Either way, both parties are getting head.  If you don't know someone, introduce yourself.  Offer them a drink.  Offer them a stiff drink.  Chances are you'll have more friends there than you think.  Who knows, you might even meet some of those Facebook friends Twitter followers you have.

Know when to leave.  You will come to a time in the night where you go to refill your plastic party cup at the bar.  On the way there you will shoulder a doorway, hip-check a chair and possibly trip.  Unbeknownst to you, no less than four dirty looks from guests will be sent your way.  If you make it to the bar in a vertical state, the punch bowl will be empty.  Do not ask, "Hey, hey is this the punch?  Wish I got some, anymore coming?" and sound like a complete chode.  Everyone knows you've been swimming in it all night.  Instead, think of your exit.  Find your hosts and thank them.  Look them in the eye, say their names, and give them a heartfelt "thank you." Now is still not the time to call your friend The Pisser by the college nickname you use on the sports field each weekend.  Consider sending your friend a text instead. *Tip:  Make sure you got that divorcee's number in your phone correctly.

So with those thoughts and rules now replacing the dancing sugar plum fairies in your head, I bid you all adieu and hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season.  Go easy on the egg nog!

Below is a playlist of the best Christmas music of all time.  Enjoy and crank it up at your next party:

- Nick

Santa baby.... by Nick Mannella on Grooveshark