Tuesday, October 5, 2010

It's your party, and I'll cry if I want to.

So, if it weren’t enough to have Halloween, my very own birthday, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and Columbus Day all in one season, a lot of my friends’ birthdays seem to be in the fall and run strong through the early winter. Since this season is quickly coming upon us, I thought I would shoot my mouth off about one thing I absolutely despise about this time of year...


So, you’re social. I get it. I would like to think I am too. You have lots of friends who come connected to other friends and trickle-down acquaintances. You don’t want to leave anyone moderately special out. So, your solution? A big, fun, lavish, loud, busy, nauseating group dinner. I don’t want to be overly dramatic, but I would rather eat a jar of jalapeños with a mouth full of canker sores than sit through a 15+ person dinner. It literally makes me want to take a Xantax with a Patron chaser.


I will NEVER understand why people think these are socially acceptable/productive events. I mean, you can’t possibly get good face time with all of your attendees. You focus on the people sitting around you or make some half-a**-ed attempts at mingling around an already busy table. And my luck, I always get stuck to your ex-boyfriend’s gym partner whose stank breath is the only redeeming quality of his personality. Also, splitting the check requires math skills that would make an Asian girl cry. The other alternative is to make that poor server split up the check 30 ways from hey now.


Can anyone who has hosted one of these monstrosities honestly say you love these dinners? Can you think of any person who doesn’t say they have a big birthday dinner to go to without rolling his/her eyes and/or sighing? In my self-proclaimed correct opinion, no dinner should include more than 6 people, 8 if they are REALLY awesome.


I suggest you forgo your giant dinner, have a quaint dinner with your 5 closest friends and throw a party for the rest of your loyal fans. If you don’t want to host a party, have a happy hour, pick a night you and your friends all go to a bar y’all never go to, or pretty much anything that isn’t a group dinner that rivals the Last Supper. I think social engagements require a bit of discrimination. It’s great to have a lot of friends and no one likes to be a social butterfly more than me. However, unless you are throwing a lock-up-your-husbands blow out of a party, it is not necessary to invite every single person you know.


Intimate engagements are much more enjoyable anyway. Also, the idea of a obligation invite makes my stomach turn. My rule of thumb: if you wouldn’t hang out with the person one on one ever, don’t feel bad for not inviting them to a party you’re hosting. And if you’re not invited to a social event, who cares? I would like to think we’re all grownups and losing any sleep over or being personally offended by not being included in something will just lead to a lonely, bitter, and early death.

8 comments:

Edgardo said...

I been quietly reading your blogs. I got to tell you, I been enjoying them more and more each time :)

I love that yoo speak your mind without hesitation!

Gina said...

Ugh. With my husband's family, there's really no choice. He's the youngest of six kids who all live in the same city (except us) and have kids of their own. So, for every brother's birthday, we have a dinner reservation somewhere for 30 people.

And it is always a disaster. And somebody is always left in tears because it is ridiculously traumatizing.

J said...

@Edgardo - Thanks!
@Gina - I would file for divorce, fake my own death, or come up with a chronic illness that has multiple flare ups.

Cole Garrett said...

I've only been to one such dinners which was an overwhelming success. It was at Bucca di Beppas, too, so the food was good.

But I have to agree, for the most part, I'd rather skip the invite to these.

Tim said...

Ditto, and I would add, insist that "no, you cannot invite others" and, if you do not invite their SO because you were not aware they had an SO, then they are probably not a good candidate for an intimate birthday dinner ;).

Phillip said...

Ummm. Thank you for posting this. I despise these dinners.

Anonymous said...

Agreed. There was one event in particular where it took and HOUR to pay the check. I had about 3 shots of patron after said dinner. I have eliminated these to more intimate parties or the newest joy of my dinner club where we cook fabulous food and drink wine at someone's home. It's fantastic....

John said...

The last and I mean LAST birthday dinner I ever attended was a train wreck. And not even the cool kind with explosions.

I threw down $40 (which was way more than my tab) and stormed out the door because I was done with all of it.

I recently was invited to someone's 3-part birthday weekend plans that included THREE different large dinners. I immediately defriended the person and am now petitioning he be crucified.

PS - we were acquaintances at best so the fact that he invited me shows that the guest list was anything but edited.