Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Well, it’s that time of year again, time for multiple office “holiday” parties.

Needless to say, ol’ Robbo loathes these annual fixtures.   (Does anybody really, I mean really, enjoy them?)  I’m not much of one for crowds or smalltalk to begin with, and especially given the increasingly poisonous politickal atmosphere ’round here, I have to watch my mouth that much more in these particular settings, pretty much confining myself to words of one syllable and saying nothing more than what a nice party it is.

When I can’t absolutely duck out altogether (either arranging to be on biznay travel or having a deadline I just have to meet) I usually contrive to make just long enough an appearance so as to give people the vague sense of my presence and then quietly slip off back to my office.  This is the trick:  One doesn’t want to be conspicuous about it, one just wants nobody to even notice.  A friend and sympathizer who knows perfectly well what I’m about always gets a good laugh at what he calls my on-board radar-defeating stealth capacity to do this.  (I can’t help thinking, in this respect, that I would have made a pretty good spy.)

Such stealthiness also has long-term benefits.  One year, when I had skipped the party altogether, somebody actually asked me why I hadn’t been there.  “What do you mean?” I said with a puzzled look on my face.  “I was standing right next to you.”  They went off, thoroughly baffled.

By the bye, this year people are being invited to bring their favorite “international dishes” and there is to be a “chili cook-off”.  If I were a trouble-maker, I’d start a whisper campaign about “cultural misappropriation” over this.  Isn’t that a Thing with the SJW kool kidz?

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