OPINION: Best guess is that this week is the last time you will get to think clearly and sensibly about Christmas.
Come Monday, she'll be all on. Work dos, school break-ups, late night shopping - you know the drill.
That inexorable creeping panic that rises to a crescendo on Christmas Eve when you realise you haven't picked up the ham and don't own enough chairs, then dissipates next morning when you open champagne and presents, and drown yourself in trifle.
She's a great tradition.
But a bit of goal setting is useful to help us be our best selves in the lead up to the big day. Pre-Christmas advice used to focus on behaviour - a series of notes-to-self about not using the work Christmas party to tell the boss she's a hottie and not wowing your workmates with how well you've been doing this year at your fun-and-fitness pole dancing classes. Modern cautionary advice is less about behaviour and more about how we record that behaviour.
Years gone by, one might have assumed everyone was equally affected by the company bar tab so that no-one would recall specifics of the evening, apart from Derek and Julie who were both teetotal and no-one cared what they thought anyway. Eggs.
But now, no-one has to remember anything the next day because - ta da - it's all on Facebook.
So you have four possible approaches. One: behave yourself. Two: confiscate all smartphones at the door. Three: get bitten by a vampire so you don't show up in pictures. Or four: take so many photos yourself that you will drown social media in your version of events.
Given that options one through three are impossible, I'd recommend the latter. Appoint yourself office paparazzo and get those puppies uploaded before the last cab is called.
"Selfies" - photographs with you in the picture - are so ubiquitous they don't really need the quote marks I gave them. The Oxford Dictionary people have just declared it the Word of the Year. Which says something both about narcissism and our penchant for inventing words that sound like baby-talk, possibly due to spending most of this winter in our onesies.
"Selfie" first entered the lexicon in Australia on 2002. Apparently, the first selfie happened when someone took a photo of themselves eating pavlova with Russell Crowe in front of a picture of Phar Lap. Fair dinkum.
Refine your selfie skills. Focus on heaps of selfies in the early part of the evening while you can still focus and your hair looks good, then leave yourself out once everyone's looking dishevelled. Upload in reverse order.
More than anything, this will be good practice for holiday snaps. Next up on the zeitgeist hit parade is the "braggie", a variant of the selfie that shows you having an awesome time somewhere fancy while wearing shades and holding a cocktail.
Once pre-Christmas is over, you'll need both.
- © Fairfax NZ News