Kris and Andy decided some time in the last few weeks that the best way to celebrate the changing of the new year and new decade (yeah, yeah, don't tell me 2010 isn't the new decade because there was no year 0 - there was no year 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or a whole bunch of other years, either. 2001 represents the END of the FIRST year, so yeah, there was a year zero and 2010 is the END of the first 10 years and January 1st 2010 is, therefore, the start of the new decade) is to celebrate the new year in each timezone as the day progresses. And what better way to celebrate each of these new years than by toasting, and drinking, a beer made in each of those time zones.
While they thought this was a brilliant idea, they had sufficient reservations to start in Russia instead of some place over the Pacific Ocean, which is what they did. Starting at noon yesterday, they toasted the timezones, drank a beer, waited twenty minutes, and tested their blood alcohol levels, and recorded them in a spreadsheet.
They started over at Kris' work, where I went to pick them up after they'd been drinking for a few hours, and to catch up on the festivities.
Well, where "catching up" means "find out what happened."
They were entertaining, to say the least.
I had handed Kris a camera and told him he had to take pictures, a directive that I impressed upon him by IMing a few minutes after the hour and reminding him to TAKE PICTURES. He did a good job, which thrilled me.
Fortunately, I showed up and saved him from having to take any more pictures. And even more fortunately, I took a lot of pictures to make up for Kris' lack.
So, like I mentioned, the timing of the day was supposed to go something like cheers! at the top of the hour, drink the beer for the next twenty minutes or so, wait 20 minutes for the alcohol to process through their systems. The twenty minute was was part of the instructions to get an accurate rating.
I was a the control. Hey look, the bottom end of the meter works!
I'm not quite sure how Kris thought he was going to continue working after having had a couple beers, but his coworkers didn't seem to think anything about it. While Kris tried to work, Andy and I goofed off. We went off to a furniture store to look for a bar for Andy (I think, I couldn't tell, though, given how much he had been drinking, but, hey, the other furniture was interesting, if only I had a bigger house or another house to furnish). We had to dash back for the next round, which pretty much set the tune for our merriment which included being accosted by an elevator, and teaching Bella what life on Jupiter must be like, include harder breathing with the greater gravity.
After their drinking for another two hours, three clinking of beers, we dashed off to P.F.Changs to pick up dinner and continued to Andy's house. We were originally going to go to Heidi and John's house, to continue our 5 year tradition of celebrating New Year's with them, but the boys were ill, and my house was a mess.
Besides, at Andy's everyone is greeted at the door by a chicken. Why would you want to go any place else?
Jessica and Eric joined us soon after for dinner. At this point, I didn't know if I should be embarrassed, embarrassed for Kris and Andy, or indifferent to their New Year's shenanigans. When Eric joined in and started drinking with them, I decided I didn't need to worry. Thankfully, Jessica was willing to drink the bubbly apple juice, so I had some who could easily interpret my eyerolls.
We had dinner, then toured the chicken coop, and noticed the blue moon with enjoyment.
Annoyingly, I discovered the time on my camera was off by an hour. Yeargh.
Around 8PM, Andy suggested a game of PowerGrid, with his Christmas present of the China/Korea board. In retrospect, that was a mistake. The game lasted FOR-EV-VER. Gah. The Chinese version had a different power station distribution model, with a much, much slower pace. The game we played before took 3 hours, this one would have taken 6 hours if we had bothered to finish it. Needless to say, the soufflés were MUCH more interesting, both to bake and to eat.
THAT tradition was definitely staying, even if going to Heidi and John's wasn't.
So, the night became each hour, we'd stop for a toast. Five minutes before, we'd be caught off-guard that an hour had passed already, the beers would change, we would be completely unable to find the ball dropping in NY on any cable channel including the Spanish channels, we'd cheer the hour, and continue playing.
Even after midnight, Andy and Kris were intent on continuing drinking and playing PowerGrid. They had beers for 1AM and 2AM. Jessica was done at midnight, even though Eric seemed willing to continue. I, too, was way done, especially with PowerGrid, so we managed to shanghai the drunken boys into ending the game. Oh, thank GOODNESS Jessica was there to help me on that one.
After Jessica and Eric left, Andy, Kris and I hit the hot tub. I was more than a little worried when the two of them started slurring their speech, but figured as long as I was alert, I could keep them out of most trouble. That midnight beer was not a good choice. The two of them were blasted.
The evening wound down with the three of us watching some really, really bad videos. They made it through thirteen beers in twelve hours, some of them really impressively alcoholic (the 12% one was a little overwhelming). Kris never managed a BAC less than 0.4 according to the breathalyzer he was using, which caused much mirth throughout the evening.
While I have to say being the sober person in a group of drunks isn't exactly the easiest way to transition to a new year, it's still an entertaining way to do it.
Welcome 2010. There are a few ways you could be worse than 2009, but let's not go there, okay?