I have assisted in the throwing of many parties, but I’ve only actually thrown three in my own living space that actually qualified as “parties” and not just gatherings or hangings out.
Of the first we dare not speak (not anymore, anyway). At the second, someone told me she loved me, and someone passed out in my stall shower (different someones; obviously a success). And, at the third I holed up in my room, jamming loudly with a rotating slate of collaborators, oblivious to the rest of the party (my ideal evening).
We are throwing my fourth party this Friday: a housewarming slash graduation slash after-party to The Last Ever (Really, This Time We Mean It) Live Performance by the 2004-05 TrebleMakers, at 7pm in Stein Auditorium.
Or, more accurately, Elise is throwing an after-party, and I am project managing the after-party.
Basically, this means I suck all the fun of party-planning out of party-planning by charting all food by meat and dairy content, calculating the low/mid/high number of total guests, using a spreadsheet to track all ingredient purchases, and creating a gantt chart to illustrate why we need to buy another slotted serving spoon.
My project management prowess seemed to be lost on the party-thrower.
Aside from the estimated twelve hours of cooking I have to do between now and Friday, in my capacity as project manager I am most concerned about how many people will show up. Though our house is spacious, it only is equipped with seating for six – seven if I bring in my lawn chair from outside.
In the depressing attendance basement of my low/mid/high equation (affirmed via PERT), only eight people are coming, which would make for a rousing game of musical chairs for the guests while Elise and I frantically proffered an alarming array of appetizers and 60+ servings of three possible main courses.
However, on the “our friends like us enough to park in South Philly just to eat food and be adults for three hours on a Friday night” side of the list (high), there are *fifty-four* people. Not exactly enough for the neighbors to call the cops, just enough to eat all of our food, and more-than-enough to pack our house like a sold out GA show.
As potentially alarming as the potential fifty-four guests are from a planning and entertainment standpoint, they are no where near as alarming as the potential eight. As a result, I have resorted to attempting to force my friends to confirm or deny their attendance (no maybes, damnit!) by sheer force of will. As that isn’t working out so well, I am in fact living minute to minute by the fickle whims of Evite. When two of our key couples declined the invite this morning due to prior plans I went into red alert.
“E,” my morning bulletin began, “M&S and G&W can no longer attend, and N&G converted to maybe. Lo/Med/Hi has taken an across the board hit due to variance from our presupposition of attendance.” The grim reality set forth in the stark light of Monday morning, I concluded with the real conundrum: “H’or Deurves situation may require re-eval; also, in danger of three-cheese chicken roll up overrun of half-dozen or more. Alter menu, or invite more guests? Pls advise, tx! – P”
And, I haven’t even started planning the music yet.