Partly Partial to Parties

She said, “Let’s have a party.”
She said, “We’ll sing and dance.”
She said to come as you are.
So I came in my pants.

Let’s party. Let’s have a party. The party starts here.

I’ll try to share these in chronological order.

I am with “Skip” at a party at  our friend Jeff’s house in high school. A chubby bleach blonde has locked herself in the bathroom and is crying. The teen drama was thick in the air. I couldn’t wait to leave.

I am at a fraternity rush party at a friend of my mother’s. College guys are standing around with beers in their hands doing nothing. One of them gives me a beer even though I am just 17. One of them says, “They’ll be more fun once they get a few drinks in them.” I couldn’t wait to leave.

I am at a party at friend of a friend’s a few nights before I was departing for college. Nikki, a super-gorgeous tenth grade waif, is fairly drunk, and trying unsuccessfully to throw up. She’s so cute that six guys are fawning over her as she heaves and belches over the toilet. I couldn’t wait to leave.

I am a freshman in college, and for some reason I have followed Jeff to a party at a frat house. It’s dark and loud, and stinks of beer and vomit. Jenny, who I knew from high school yearbook staff, stumbles over to us and says, “I can’t believe you guys are here. People are beginning to talk.” I couldn’t wait to leave.

Over the years I have discovered that almost all parties are really just excuses to behave badly, irrationally, vulgarly. And if I am invited to a party where I know there will be no alcohol served, I know that it will be boring and lifeless.

So what is this, an indictment of society? On the contrary, it is an observation that human behavior benefits not from forced social gatherings, but from organically-occuring intimacy.

Intimacy, by the way, is the goal of any self-actualized person, and avoiding intimacy is the goal of everyone else.

My neighbors and I often gathered around candles at our apartment when I lived in town. About the only planning that went into it was someone knocking on the door and asking, "hey, you wanna hang out?"
My neighbors and I often gathered around candles at our apartment when I lived in town. About the only planning that went into it was someone knocking on the door and asking, “hey, you wanna hang out?”
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4 Comments

  1. I much prefer “gatherings” to parties, and even more delightful are meetups between very small numbers of people, no more than five or six. Although occasionally I relish the anonymity that I can find in a large crowd.

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  2. Yep, I can hang at the party seen but it is not the stuff that makes my heart soar any more. I like small groups and cooking with each other. This post made me miss, Ann and Cookie Roo. The four of us knew how to hang! Love you RB!

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