April 2nd, 2003

Party Fears Two

(... I can just hear some of you youngsters out there saying "What happened to Party Fears One?")

So, in not so very many weeks it will be my birthday, and I haven't yet decided what to do to celebrate it. It's a bit awkward because this year my birthday is a Friday and the birthday of a close friend of mine is the Sunday - well, they are always two days apart, but the last couple of years he's organised something for the Saturday night, which has left me having to go with the Friday, and this year that isn't very convenient (even if it is the actual day).

Friend has therefore organised something for the daytime on the Saturday, which is fine. He mailed out to the usual suspects about that a few days back. I mailed out to people yesterday saying "I will be organising something for the Saturday evening, and also there's this thing on the Sunday evening that we'll be going to, anyone want to come along?"

All I've had back so far is a few people saying they're otherwise busy, which is a shame but not unexpected since I've left it so late.

But nobody has given a positive response to the idea of doing something on Saturday night. (Well, except the guy who's going to another party the same night but not too far away who reckons he might be able to make it to both.) Maybe I should have been a bit firmer about it being useful to know who might come.

See, I was thinking of organising a party. And this, for me, would be fairly major stress, since I've seen what parties do to other people's houses, and I always worry whether people are having a good time if I've organised it (yes, yes, they're adults, chronologically at least, and therefore this ought to be their problem rather than mine - but I can't turn off the 'hostess' bit), and what if nobody comes? But wouldn't it be fun? If enough people did turn up?

It's been a while since I organised a party. Last year for my birthday we booked a bit of a pub and got some food in and suchlike, and that wasn't too bad but of course the pubs close at 11pm (where's that legislation you promised us, Blair?). Usually the pub's the way to go, but we have a bigger house now and it is a sort-of milestone birthday and you can never hear yourself talk in the pub and it's usually smoky and there are never enough seats and what about the people who don't drink?

Five years ago beloved and I held a joint birthday party for which we booked out most of a (smallish) hotel. It was great, and people loved it, but it was quite expensive (as you might expect) and we let people know the date about six months in advance. Can't do that this time.

So maybe I should just cut my losses and tell people to show up to a pub somewhere instead. Then it won't matter if it's just me and the beloved and the barman.

Sheesh. It's like the most unattractive bits of being fourteen all over again.