The holidays bring out a lot of different sides of people, from the holiday-sweater-wearing fanatic to the “Bah-humbug” Scrooge in the cubicle around the corner. Holiday parties are as natural as the changing of the seasons, and in today’s tech-driven, e-mail and Twitter world, the chance to interact with each other, face-to-face, can seem more precious than ever. But, for too many people, seasonal excitement, personal relationships and holiday parties can quickly lead to a drunk driving disaster.
A holiday party, whether on an impulse or planned, gives us all plenty of reason to have too many beers or cups of punch. We’re surrounded by co-workers, our friends and those who know us better than our families at times. That relaxed atmosphere and those dips into the punchbowl can quickly lead to the realization that at some point, we have to go home. We have to drive, and we might be a little too buzzed to get home safely.
Being safe means that you have a plan at any time to get home after you’ve been drinking. It doesn’t matter if you’re at a bar, at a neighbor’s house or stuck at work for a holiday party, your plan should begin well before you take that first sip. You could skip the punch and champagne and opt for another (non-alcoholic) drink, or you could be the “office hero,” and offer sober rides home to anyone who is clearly more “in the spirit” than you are. Being safe not only saves you from a drunk driving conviction and possible ignition interlock or car breathalyzer requirement, but, you could also save the lives of the people you see each day.
There is no reason to make yourself the “life of the party” at any office gathering by drinking to excess, and by choosing to drink responsibly, you’re in a much better position to earn the respect of your co-workers. Being safe when drinking is a responsibility we all share, and while it may be tempting to let loose during a holiday blow-out, the best choice you can make is to drive sober. This year, instead of risking a drunk driving incident, break out your best holiday sweater and make the holiday season safe for us all.