The next few weeks are an avalanche of holiday gatherings: Your office party, your significant other's office party, your best friend's tree-trimming, a friend-of-a-friend's house party, Christmas, a Friday-after-Christmas happy hour, and before you know it, it's New Year's Eve.

For many people, this involves drinking alcohol – especially if you're going on a Santa Bar Crawl or to one of the many holiday beer events. That's fine, as long as you drink responsibly and don't drink and drive. To make the latter easier, the Washington Regional Alcohol Program is bringing back its annual SoberRide campaign. From tonight through January 1, if you've had one spiked eggnog too many and need a ride home, call 1-800-200-TAXI and SoberRide promises a free cab ride home. (Well, free as long as the fare is under $30. If it's more than that, you pay the difference.)

Now, SoberRide is not perfect. I've called before and had cabs not show up. I've had cabs show up 30 to 45 minutes after they were promised, while I stood on a corner and waited. (This seems to happen most on Saturday nights.) Honestly, if it's cold and/or snowing, I'd probably suck it up and get a regular taxi. But I've also had nights where the cabs showed up with no problems at all. Either way, it's better than getting a DUI or being involved in an accident.

A list of participating cab companies and areas served is available on