Catching a bus after yoga I caught up with people from my department on the deck at the Irish Emigrant. The deck is really more of a second story garage with wooden floors, but it turned out to be cooler than expected, given the extended summer in Seattle. As the happy hour progressed with discount pints and ridiculously cheap energy dense appetizers the setting sun started creeping in through the open doors. Eventually it had the feel of an interrogation chamber or oven, though talking and group working through the free in the summer NYT crossword rendered the mounting heat less noticeable until it was downright oppressive. And with that, we started to make an exit, at which point the previous cliqueisness of these affairs becomes apparent and in the breaking up into sub-contingents, there is the rush to make up for the neglected catching up and with simultaneous hellos and goodbyes.
Which is not to say that I'm not happy about this year's efforts to have some departmental socialization. The experiment has been mostly successful, at least when compared to the seemingly social wasteland of previous years.
Carole and I met Atri for dinner at Cedars and amazingly were seated upon arrival. This, the second deck seating of the evening, turned out to be much more pleasant. After dinner, I was ready to slip into an Indian food induced coma; so I went home to watch the Office Christmas special, which was every bit as perfect as I'd been told to expect.