Meeting ID: BEER-ME
The Handoff Guide to Happier Virtual Happy Hours
Zoom… can’t live with it, can’t live without it. You need it for school. You need it for work. You need it to socialize. You can’t hug your friends, but you can watch them pee. You can’t go to your parent’s house for a home-cooked meal, but you can get a reassuring look at your mom’s forehead. You can’t talk smack about Karen the receptionist’s creepy cat obsession with your work friends, but you can hear all about Karen the receptionist’s cats. The ups and downs of constant Zoomage have made for quite an adventure.
After a long day of Zoom calls for work or school, it’s time to relax and unwind with… you guessed it… another Zoom call, but this time you don’t have to drink your beer out of a coffee mug to avoid suspicion from your boss or professor. This time, you get to log on with your favorite people, crack a cold one or ten, and let the mindless banter begin. It won’t be long now until we’re off of Zoom and onto the rooftop bar, but in the meantime, we decided to whip up a list of the top five things we’ve learned about creating the ideal Zoom Happy Hour.
1) Set a time.
- Organizing a Zoom Happy Hour can be a pain in the ass. Jimmy is busy playing Call of Duty, Larry is doing chores for his mom (fricken Larry with the reasonable excuses), Lauren is terrified of what last night’s Chinese take-out is doing to her body, and Kim feels “a little bit too tired… like OMG” when everyone knows she’s deep into the fourth season of Love Island. Coordinating something with your close friends is difficult, but if you show some initiative, you can make sure Jimmy shuts down Call of Duty in a timely manner so everyone can enjoy his company.
2) Set the mood.
- Wear something absolutely ridiculous. Is your old prom dress gathering dust in your closet? Throw it on for a Zoom Happy Hour. An old Halloween costume? Fire it up. We all get a kick out of seeing our friends look like total idiots. Take matters into your own hands and be the idiot you know your friends love.
- Put up a funny background. Do you have old embarrassing pictures of your friends? Why not get the chatter flowing with a Snapchat screenshot of your friend rockin’ a gnarly combover as your background.
- For those of you who are a bit more organized, set a theme for your happy hour. Fire up some Hawaiian shirts and leis for a Luau theme. Have a costume contest. Have a sports jersey night. Dress as your favorite celebrity. Wear what you’d wear to a rave. Dress like a hillbilly. The possibilities are endless, and the more themes you try, the more creative you have to get with the next one. The creative themes you come up with will certainly translate to some killer house parties when we all get to see each other again.
3) Get the party started.
- Have you ever heard the song “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC? Well, there’s a drinking game attached to it, and it’s a bloody ripper. Every time you hear the word “thunder” as the song plays, a new person begins drinking, and you rotate through everyone on repeat until the song is over. It’s absolutely hysterical, but watch out for the long guitar solo and keep a few reserve beers by your computer in case the song chooses you to slam beers at an inhuman pace. This can continue throughout the night if you sporadically turn on the song during your call… “Thunder!” *moans from your computer screen*
- If you don’t feel like hammering beers or seltzers and maybe just want a glass of wine, Psych is a phenomenal app that allows you to dig into your friend’s personal lives from a distance. Throw around some quality jokes, and vote on who had the best answer to each question. There’s endless fun to be had with this game.
- When you spend all day on the computer, it’s refreshing to touch something other than your keyboard. Grab a deck of cards, and sink into a game of king’s cup. Only one person needs a deck, and you can agree on what goes into the king’s cup before the game begins. Maybe the loser has to eat a spoonful of mayonnaise, take a tequila shot, or simply finish their drink.
- Ever been iced? There is nothing quite like watching a good friend struggle to pound a Smirnoff Ice at an opportune moment. Opportunity is knockin’ so place a Handoff order and send some Ices to your friends to get them in the mood and have a laugh. Let the #CyberIce games begin!
- Play Chubby Bunny. This game is equal parts hilarious and stupid. Have everyone buy a bag of marshmallows before your scheduled happy hour. Each person takes turns stuffing marshmallows into their mouth one by one without swallowing. Then say the phrase ‘chubby bunny’ until there’s too many marshmallows in your mouth to pronounce the words. The last person to pronounce ‘chubby bunny,’ usually with an obscene amount of marshmallows jammed into their face, is the winner. The Handoff record is 17 marshmallows, so if you can beat that, please record it and send us a video!
4) Do something creative.
- Drinking games are always fun, but sometimes it’s better to vibe with your friends on a collaboration of sorts. Work together to write a theme song for your favorite movie.
- Guess this one: “Once there was a boy with a scar. His life was really quite hard. He was told he was magic, that ain’t so tragic, and so he became a wizard.” It’s obviously Harry Potter. Hard and wizard don’t really rhyme unless you force it... but you get the picture. It’s fun for everyone and gives you a good chance to shake things up!
- Do a Bob Ross guided painting session. Nothing goes better together than Bob Ross and a bottle of wine. Wear afro wigs to give the evening a bit more funky kick!
- Create an online scavenger hunt.
- Find a viral youtube video from your youth. Like an ex’s old Instagram photo “on accident.” Re-share your first Facebook post. Find a website where the domain name doesn’t match the content. The possibilities are endless, but half the fun is designing it yourself!
- Plan a big post-quarantine adventure. We’ve all been dreaming about our next grand adventure, so why not take some time to plan it out with some friends? Maybe you want to go to Iceland or South Africa. Do some research together and build a travel itinerary. In no time at all, you’ll be dunking your head in Iceland’s coldest waterfall! It also gives you something to look forward to, which is never a bad thing.
- Have a haiku writing competition. 5 syllables, 7 syllables, 5 syllables. This can be a riot if you put in the effort. You set the stage with the first 5 syllables, add some context with the next 7 syllables, and on the last 5, you drop some sort of punchline or explanation to wrap it up... and boom goes the dynamite! For example: “I hate quarantine (5). I’ve been eating terribly (7). Hope that was a fart (5).”
5) Show some love.
- Obviously, it’s important to blow off some steam and screw around with your friends, but showing your people a little extra love is important. We all have a lot of thoughts swimming around in our heads right now. Maybe your girlfriend’s dog is really pissing you off. Maybe you ran out of toilet paper and the situation has put you in a terrible headspace. Maybe your sister asking for “one more favor” has sent you over the edge. Maybe you’re tired of making a bagel with cream cheese for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Whatever it is, Zoom Happy Hour is a great time to download your crazy emotions with the people who care about you most. It keeps the important parts of your relationships alive. Not to mention, the feedback from your friends and family on the deeper cabin fever issues can be a much-needed release.
Sure, your mom’s forehead is getting old… likely in more ways than one. Yes, the view of your friend peeing is far from savory. Karen the receptionist’s cats could very well be the central focus of your entire work life right now. We’re all getting a little bit sick of Zoom as a whole, but as long as our social lives are limited to an online sphere, we might as well milk it for what it’s worth. Fire up a Zoom Happy Hour with the rabble-rousers you call your friends and settle in for a nice evening of debauchery.
Here’s a haiku for the road: “Zoom Happy Hour (5). It’s more fun if you’re thirsty (7). Drink up, buttercup! (5)”
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