Another week gone by, and again most of it spent at work. It really does not matter what you do, how much you like doing it, or how long you have been doing it for. There is nothing like a good happy hour with coworkers (hopefully ones you like) to cap off another work week, be it good or bad. It is the best part of many a work week. As I prepare for fatherhood, I am mentally preparing myself to part ways with this magic time called happy hour. I know that becoming a dad will be much more rewarding, and that in time I will be back, but for now I must say farewell to you happy hour. I will miss you, let me count the ways.
I will miss having my bosses buy me drinks.
I will miss making fun of coworkers in ways that are kind of true. Whereupon hearing such jokes everyone kind of knows the fault being exposed but all laugh it away because it is the magic time of happy hour, when these things are fair game.
I will miss the telling of stories that are not appropriate for work. These stories, and not work, are the best way to get to know your coworkers.
I will miss witnessing the awkward sexual tension between coworkers as they dance on the border of actually hitting on each other and just being friendly.
Most of all I will miss the freedom borne of having absolutely no responsibilities outside my own well-being until next I go to work.
I knowingly trade all of this in to become a dad. Soon, after another long day of work is done, in the last of five long days of work, I will skip happy hour and come home to my son. He will have crapped his diapers, and I will change them. When I change them he will try to pee on my face. As I dodge the pee I will drop a diaper full of poo on the carpet. While I am cleaning the carpet of infant poo, I will wonder how my coworkers are getting along at the happy hour. What stories are being told? Who did something inappropriate? What are they going to talk about the next morning at work? When the poo is finally cleaned off the carpet I will pick up my son. As I look at him, and he looks back, I will forget about happy hour.