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So where's my office party?

The loneliness of a freelancer during the holidays.

Thanks to a knock-me-flat cold that has kept me out of the real world for the past week, I won't be going to my hubby's annual holiday party. It's a record of sorts, having accompanied him to these annual December soirees for the past 34 years. And we've done 'em all, from floating around Lake Union aboard a decorated ship (the first 20 minutes was fun) to a wild party at the top of Smith Tower (complete with a tarot card reader and me doing a bad karaoke of "I've Got You Babe" with one of my hubby's colleagues).

But like a lot of companies, his holiday bash is a low-key affair this year: a Mexican pot-luck fiesta with a white elephant gift exchange at somebody's house. I'm sorry I won't be attending, but the combined forces of my lingering cold plus a major cold front and storm moving in to Puget Sound made a journey from Whidbey Island to West Seattle seem as daunting as the Lewis and Clark Expedition. My hubby is going without me.

No doubt a lot of companies won't be hosting holiday parties this year. John Cook reports in TechFlash about the downsizing of the Seattle holiday party (RealNetworks cancelled theirs). But not everybody has gone Scroogey during this economic slump, at least according to my Facebook page. That's where I spied a big batch of photos from the Seattle P-I's recent holiday party at the Pacific Science Center. I recognized a few folks from their mug shots: David Horsey, Monica Guzman, and Art Thiel to name a few. I'm sure they love having their pix splashed across the Internet with libations in hand. Our journalist friends back in the Big Apple don't seem to be slowing down, either. Media Bistro reports that American Business Media held its holiday mixer this week, as did the New York Press Club, American Society of Magazine Editors and ASJA (American Society of Journalists and Authors). I'm sure they all set records for liquor consumption.

So that leaves me with me. Since being a freelancer is somewhat of a solo occupation, I'll celebrate at home alone, and it won't be anything fancy. My suefrause dot com holiday party will feature Martinelli's Sparkling Cider, Paul Newman Popcorn, Fran's Chocolates, Robitussin, and Kleenex. Evening activities include addressing the family Christmas cards, listening to Christmas music, and watching White Christmas for the bazillionth time. I just love the finale where Bob, Betty, Phil and Judy raise their glasses with snow falling in the background while they sing the famous Irving Berlin tune. It gets me every time.

Sue Frause is a Whidbey Island freelance writer and photographer. You can reach her at sue@suefrause.com.


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