For the last few years, Kish and I have stayed up late exactly one time each year: the night of the firm’s holiday party. Because we want to maximize our opportunity to visit with everybody who comes in for the party, we get a room at the hotel, stay until the party and after-party end, and then head over to the Char Bar next door until it kicks everybody out.
That happens at 2:30 a.m., which is far, far past my normal bedtime.
But somehow, on this one night, that doesn’t seem to be a problem. For me, at least, it’s much easier to stay up if there are a lot of people around and interesting conversations to be had. It’s all about your state of mind and a little careful preplanning and pacing. You make sure you eat and establish that crucial base, you start with wine and then step down to beer rather than powering down mixed drinks, and you make sure that rather than sitting you’re on your feet, taking advantage of the chance to move from group to group and chat with friends. The next thing you know, they’re rolling the bar away, you check your phone and it’s much later than you thought, and it’s time to move on.
The Char Bar is a good place to end up after a long night. You’ve got your regulars, you’ve got the tipsy, weaving patrons who’ve had a few too many Long Island Iced Teas, and then you inject a late-night invasion of suit-wearing men and shiny-outfitted women. It makes for an interesting mixture, and you can play darts, too. It’s easier to stay alert when you are hurling sharp objects.