My wife used to be a teacher before she left her job to stay at home with our daughter. When she was teaching I remember going to many teacher happy hours with her coworkers. For some reason I’ve represented a disproportionately large amount of nurses and teachers for DWI. I’m pretty sure I’d drink too if I was overworked and underappreciated. A fair number of my clients seemed to be on their way home from some kind of happy hour.

I’ve just a couple pieces of advice. First, quit keeping your receipts. If you’re arrested the officer will keep the receipts they find on you as evidence of what/how much you drank (there are some evidentiary problems with the receipts, but that’s for another day). A receipt that shows five beers or a few “purple” margaritas just looks bad.

Try and pace yourself. There’s often pressure at happy hours to keep up with your coworkers in terms of number of drinks. Drink some water or club soda in between drinks. If it’s a networking function you’ll probably find that they open up more as the night progresses anyway while you kept your wits–no doubt a sure fire way to get a leg up in the workplace. Don’t forget to have some appetizers too (the food will help).

One more thing, remember that if you’re arrested for DWI and you have a child in the car who is younger than 15 it’s a felony–even if you’ve never been arrested before. You’d be surprised how many people I see who are on their way home from happy hour with their kiddo in the car. They’ve usually brought them with them (not as bad as it sounds when the happy hour is at an Applebee’s) or picked up the child from daycare. A DWI with a child in your car will also result in your blood automatically being taken (at least in this neck of the woods).