Omnivore - Booze-related advice for making it to 2011

Surviving the season with Greg’s tips for drunk shopping, holiday parties and overeating

OK. Here we are. Neck deep in the madness and wondering how to make it out alive. Well, my friends, I’ve got some ideas. Make no mistake, the next few weeks will take cunning and guile if you want to usher in the New Year with a sound and peaceful mind.

My first recommendation would be to avoid drinking and shopping. Many will tell you it’s easier to shop with a couple drinks in you, but they’re wrong. It’s hard enough for me to remember the girlfriend’s sizing, the one kind of cologne dad likes and the exact f*#king Barbie iteration the niece is dying to have. Besides which, having a loose tongue and a few ounces of liquid courage coursing through the body on those tedious lines surrounded by zombies and their phones rarely ends well. Instead, try rewarding yourself after shopping with a boozy cure to mellow and relax. My picks — Rye Manhattan up with a twist, Champagne Cocktail, or a Dunlop Cocktail (sherry, rum and bitters).

Then there are the parties. Nothing is truly as rewarding/horrifying than a party with friends and family or co-workers during this most merry and joyous time. Punch is dangerous. Rarely crafted by an experienced hand, punch tends to be the unassuming time bomb in plain view. Have a glass to toast and continue on to safer sipping. That being said ... you know that pain in the ass from down the hall? Easily dealt with for years to come by assuring them of the virtues of the brightly colored beverage while continuously offering to refill their cup! The sun has never been brighter than to a person suffering a punch-drunk hangover.