Manners Monday - 3 Basic Cocktail Party Tips
Cocktail party basics
Here you are, dear reader. Dressed to the nines, mingling with good friends at a wedding, or with colleagues and bosses at a work cocktail party. You are famished. The day’s pressures haven’t yet escaped your body. All you want to do is stuff your face with booze and food and just let loose. And guess what: this is not the time.
The nice thing with a cocktail party is that it doesn’t last too long. So bear with us, and know that you’ll be able to relax in just a couple of hours. In the meantime, below are some simple behaviours to keep in mind. Note: some might seem overly-obvious, and yet, there is evidence to the contrary… so here goes:
Alcoholic drinks are usually available before food. If you’re really hungry, and alcohol is the first thing that goes into your belly, you will likely get intoxicated faster. That’s a good thing, you might be thinking, as you’re stuck in a long chat with Aunt Alice or having to listen to yet another lecture about the evils of passive-aggressive notes around the office kitchen. But it might be better to exercise a little self-control; at least until the head honchos and/or grandparents have taken their leave. Don’t do it for me, do it so that you’re not giving others ammunition against you in the future. Do you really want to be the person who got hammered in such a short amount of time?
Drinking water before your first drink will help, as will having a glass of something non-alcoholic to sip on between cocktails. How boring, right? I agree. But people can be really mean. Remember that, and take control of your reputation. Cheers!
Picture this: you’ve just had a divine appetizer with raw garlic. You whirl around to tell your friend or colleague just how divine it was, but fall face to face with the CEO of a company you’ve just applied for, or, at a social gathering, the most gorgeous person you’ve ever laid eyes on. No, garlic breath is not the end of the world, but it sure does start a relationship off on a foul note. I will venture a guess that you don’t want to be “that guy with the bad breath”, when you’re being considered for a promotion, or trying to snag a date. Pop a breath mint and smile!
Breath mints have the added advantage over gum of not having to scout out a garbage, and eliminate the chances of your jaw flapping up and down all night. Which brings us to:
Keep your mouth shut!
Unless you’re warning your cocktail party companions that they are about to be eaten by a tuxedo'd loose seal, there is absolutely no reason for your mouth to be open while there is anything in it. None. Period.
Having a discussion with someone? They say something so aberrant that you simply must interject? Tough luck. Chew, swallow, then speak. Hey, those extra few seconds may give you the time to think about what you’re going to say. Here’s a tip that I use, because I have trouble holding on to my thoughts when I get into a heated conversation: take teeny, tiny bites. Quick to chew, lasts longer, avoids grossing out your interlocutors.
That’s it for now. Just three little habits to keep in mind before you walk into your next cocktail party. There is more, of course, and you can read about it in future Manners Mondays posts.
Thanks for dropping by, and have a fabulous week!