Sunday, December 31, 2006

Your Handy Dandy Party Guidelines

I wrote this list years ago for the Art Conspiracy, when I was contributing a daily rant for their homepage. The following is an updated version.

Everyone will be out partying tonight, thinking deep thoughts about the nature of time, reevaluating the past year, or celebrating the turning of the year in their own unique way. One should follow certain guidelines when making choices about their New Year's Eve activity. I would suggest the following:

New Year's Eve is popularly accepted as a good time for self-examination. It is not, however, recommended that you consume excessive amounts of alcohol before any in-depth navel gazing. You might injure yourself. Sometimes taking stock of your life isn't the best way to spend New Year's. As Minnie Driver's character in Gross Pointe Blank says, "Leave your livestock alone."

The lampshade does not actually look good on your head.

If you go out in public or attend a gathering, there will very likely be poeple with cameras. If you don't want something caught on film, you might want to think twice about doing it at all. There is a particularly incriminating play-by-play series of five photographs circulating amongst my friends from a New Year's several years ago. I am dressed to the nines in a slinky full length black gown and stilettos and the pictures capture me: A) laughing while sitting in one of those odd circular "papasan" chairs, B) falling backwards in the aforementioned chair, feet sticking in the air - clever me, still holding drink aloft, C) tipping the chair forward so as to escape, D) crawling out of the bowl of the chair onto the floor (drink still aloft) and finally, D) on the floor, wagging a finger at the photographer as I declare, "I am not drunk." ...Don't let this happen to you.

Try to avoid illegal activity. It's bad karma to start the year that way and, anyhow, if you can't have fun doing something legal then you aren't very creative.

Despite what you may tell yourself at 2 a.m. - everyone WILL remember that you danced animatedly to YMCA, that you finally told whatsername what you really think of her and that you kissed the guy from accounting. It all seems harmless at the time but - trust me - you had better be prepared to hear about it all next year. Especially if you kiss someone or a lot of someones whom who would not normally be kissing. No one will let you forget that.

Don't flash people unless you are very attractive. It's not nice to ruin someone else's holiday.

Don't take a date whom you are not particularly attached to or haven't been seeing for a long time. You will get stuck with major-holiday-date-syndrome. You have to kiss them at midnight. You are uncomfortably aware that you may not be kissing them on a regular basis for much longer or - worse - you may end up wishing you weren't kissing them at all. Later that year you will have a vague memory of some strange person you may not even say hello to when passing in public. and First dates are right out! This is not the time to find out someone is a boring conversationalist or a bad kisser!

Don't drink and drive. Again, this is a not-ruining-someone-else's-holiday issue.

If you're looking for something different to do I suggest painting REPENT, THE END IS NEAR on both sides of a sandwich board sign and hanging it over your neck. Wear this to the party or event you were planning to attend or - even better - wander aimlessly along the streets downtown amidst the crowds. People love this. For higher impact, wear just the sandwich board.

Do remember to call loved ones. You never know who might be feeling forgottten around the time the ball drops. Have your cell phone handy and fully charged and spread a little love around. Christmas may be the traditional time to tell people you care, but New Year's eve is also an excellent time to tell people that they are special and that they are remembered.

Having the cell-phone on hand, however, is not an option for those who are prone to the drunk dial. If you are a drunk dialer - and you know who you are - leave the cell phone at home or hand it to a trusted friend before you are too fully sloshed to make reasonable choices anout just who needs to hear your mellifluous voice at midnight.

Have fun. Be Safe. Best Wishes for a very happy coming year for everyone!

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