I like to think of myself as a fun person- as a social person that people enjoy being around and for the most part I am. However, as I get older it seems to get harder to make friends and form groups? Does anyone else find this to be the case? I don’t know if it is because I have such great friends and do not feel the need to make new ones or if other people are too busy, or perhaps I’m not as agreeable as I used to be? It’s funny because I think my skills as a host have only improved as I’ve gotten older- and yet there seems to be less to host!
What brought all of these thoughts up is I have been trying to organize small groups for our church ladies organization called Enrichment. These groups are supposed to focus on a variety of topics and help all the women in the congregation feel included. In past wards I have had success in gathering girls for book clubs, cooking groups, and movie nights, but not in this ward. It is like pulling teeth to get anyone to come to anything. Yesterday we had book club and I picked a Jane Austen- Persuasion (so good!)- and I am embarrassed to say nobody came except for my roommate. A bunch of people had said they could come on Sunday but then nobody showed. Only 2 called with excuses (one had a flooded basement and another had a bad flu). On a side note- whatever happened to the notion of RSVP’ing. I grew up in Maryland where a little of that Southern hospitality creeped into the culture. If you said you were going to be somewhere, you better be in a hospital if you don’t show up. At least a call explaining why you can’t come should be common courtesy.
Don’t worry- I wasn’t devastated or anything merely disappointed that I couldn’t talk about the book and that my pretty tea party went unappreciated. Boo hoo! Thankfully Megan had read the book for her book club last month and so I called and we had a good discussion. Plus, my cute nieces and sisters are coming into town so we will have a tea party together! (In fact, on Saturday we are going to the Princess Festival in Lindon- how fun will that be!). The whole family is arriving tomorrow, and I can’t wait. It has only been a couple months since I saw them but it feels longer. Baby Nelle is crawling and pulling herself up already! Wow!
I am not intending this posting to engender pity- I have great friends, and I have a full life. I am merely puzzled by my recent inability to attract new friends. It isn’t just with Enrichment but the few times I have had parties the turnout is low. I used to be able to always attract a crowd. Weird, hah? I’ve even offered to have a party up at the rental homes with a hot tub and pool table, but nobody has taken me up on it. What do you all think? Is there an age where movie nights and game parties are passe?
This is a funny entry on SWPL that applies to the need to host dinner parties. Enjoy!
Though many would have you believe that white people come of age at Summer Camp, it’s simply not the truth. Immediately following graduation but prior to renovating a house, white people take their first step from childhood to maturity by hosting a successful dinner party.
It is imperative that white people know how to host a good dinner party as they will be expected to do it well into retirement.
At the most basic level, these simple gatherings involve 3-6 couples getting together at a single house or apartment, having dinner and talking for 5-6 hours. Though it might seem basic these events are some of the most stressful situations in all of white culture.
Hosts are expected to deliver a magical evening. The food must be home made with fresh, organic ingredients, the music must be just right (ambient, new, but not too loud), and the decorations inside the house should be subtle but elegant. The ultimate goal is to do a better job than the couple at the last dinner party while attempting to make everyone jealous and sort of dislike you.
The dinner party is the opportunity for white people to be judged on their taste in food, wine, furniture, art, interior design, music, and books. Outside of dictatorships and a few murder trials, there might not be a more rigorous judgment process in the modern world. Everything must be perfect. One copy of US Weekly, a McDonalds wrapper, a book by John Grisham, a Third Eye Blind CD, or an Old School DVD can undo months and maybe even years of work.
Even before guests arrive the pressure on the host is immense and it does not let up once people begin to arrive. While eating, drinking, and conversation are expected to fill up 5-6 hours, sometimes it’s just not enough. In order to fill the silence, white people will often turn to board games (Cranium!) or Wii Bowling. This lets everyone have fun together without having to really talk to each other, which is usually more fun anyways.
It is strongly encouraged to bring a gift to these dinner parties, usually either wine or some kind of dessert. If you are able to bring a particularly rare dish from your culture, you will be the star of the party. To seal the deal, be sure to explain as much as you possibly can about the dish: history, availability, and the proper way to eat it. Every white person at the party will be taking mental notes and will be in your debt for introducing them to something new and authentic. If a white person says they have eaten the dish before, it is best to respond by saying “you ate a watered down version. They don’t even sell this to white people, it’s that intense. Even I had to show ID.”
The entire party will universally acknowledge you as the top guests, even the hosts will appreciate you for bringing diversity to the table in both food and person form.