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I went to a dinner at the Ikea in Brooklyn. It happens annually, and this is the fourth one. Every year, we meet at the docks near the parking lot, as the bulk of the group comes in via the water taxi from Manhattan, and we go up to the cafeteria at the top floor. They have some interesting and unusual imbibables, such as soda made with fermented apples and pears, or lingonberry sauce. Most everyone at this event comes in wearing a Santa hat or something similar. It's not an ironclad rule, but it makes it easier for us to all congregate.

After the eating is done, half an hour before the place closes, we slowly make our way towards the exit. Ikea is designed like a giant maze, so you walk for a very long time, in a very convoluted, very winding path to the exit. As we go, we try out all the chairs and sofas and beds, we try to cram as many people as we can in small spaces (like shower stalls), and we generally good off in interesting ways. This year, some of us discovered that the sinks that they are now selling are conveniently butt-sized. At the end of it all, most of the group goes to a nearby bar to hang out. Theres an outside area in back where you can actually hear people talk, so it's not as bad as a typical bar.

It's a nice tradition, and it's very social and fun. It usually takes place the night before Santacon, but this year there's a week of separation between the two events. The guy who hosts the event, as well as several others of note, is kind of getting burned out from the years of effort and the dramatic decrease in people interested in doing cool things. He's sort of like a Jeff Mach after the peak of the mountain passes. I hope that this is just a temporary thing, as I like the get-togethers he puts together.

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jcholewa
JC (John Cholewa)

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