We Partied Like It Was 1999

Remember back when I said that when we finished building the deck, we would have a big deck party? Well, I totally didn't mean it. I mean, I meant it, but in the same way that you promise yourself that THIS year, you're going to keep that New Year's resolution to exercise three days a week, or that this is the ABSOLUTE LAST piece of cake. As basically anyone who knows us can attest, Tony and I are, how should we say, anti-social hermits. It's not that we dislike's just that we dislike BEING with people. And we dislike parties in general because the idea is to make small talk with lots of people, and we just don't do that. Talk? To people? Ones that I only have a passing familiarity with? I don't think so. We're much more of the "stay at home and watch TV" type than the "go out partying with a bunch of friends" type. But lately I've decided that we need to expand our comfort zones, so I've been pushing Tony (okay both of us) to attend more group functions. This happens with varying degrees of success, but I think we're improving. We started small with family dinners, then moved our way up to a bonfire where we only knew a few people. (I'm doing okay. Tony is protesting the whole experiment by attempting to develop a stomach ulcer).

Then one day, Tony totally blew me away by suggesting that he wanted to have a cookout at our house for some friends of his! And he was serious, which can only mean one thing:

Tony has obviously been body snatched.

It seems, however, that Tony missed his zoo friends, so he wanted to invite them over to have a cookout party on the new deck. I don't know who this new Tony is, but I wanted to support any attempts at social interaction, so we decided to throw a party. And with that, Tony called up his zoo buddies to invite them (actually, he called one person and asked her to spread the word) and I looked at our house through the eyes of someone who has just invited a dozen strangers over. Suddenly, the carpet was filthy and the flower beds were full of weeds and the living room was cluttered, and I was saying things like, "we can't ask people to sit on these ratty old chairs!" And with that, the frantic cleaning began. While I was putting lattice up around the bottom of the deck, Tony had rented a carpet cleaner and cleaned the ENTIRE house. I mulched flowerbeds (because you can't let people see last year's mulch! Martha would be shocked!) while Tony cleaned windows, inside and out. I sewed new chair cushions for the patio furniture, and Tony cleaned the oven (because you never know when someone is going to sneak inside the house on the pretense of going to the bathroom and look inside your oven instead). I dusted ceiling fan blades (which were gross! I probably need to do that more often) and Tony mowed the lawn. Then we refilled the tiki torches with citronella fuel, and hung Japanese paper lanterns, and cut fresh flowers out of the garden to fill random vases, and lit scented candles in every room of the house. And we cleaned and scrubbed and disinfected until we could have put aseptically sealed hospital rooms to shame, and exactly 10 minutes after all the carpets dried and the Rug Doctor was returned to Lowes, Dixon threw up on the floor.

Finally, Sunday evening rolled around, and Tony paced around like he was about to face a firing squad as we waited for the first people to arrive. (That's my Tony!) But then the first couple showed up, and I graciously offered them drinks, and we all sat down in the living room and looked at each other, and there was a momentary awkward pause, and then Tony said, "So what's new at the zoo?" and we were off to the races, because the zoo is full of entertaining and bizarre creatures, and I'm not talking about the animals here. More zookeepers arrived, and they also added their crazy zoo stories, and just like that, we were laughing and talking and eating and having a grand old time. Mason kept everyone entertained, and Dixon even made an appearance at the top of the stairs to meow at everyone. Finally someone mentioned that it was getting past their bedtime, and I was shocked to see that it was 11pm, and that we had been talking for four and a half hours. (Tony, who never says more than a few words at parties normally, was laughing and telling animated stories all night). Everyone thanked us for inviting them and that they had a lovely time and we would have to do it again sometime as they gathered up their belongings and headed off. And that was our first official non-family party, and I think it was a roaring success, even if no one sat on my newly cushioned chairs, or commented about how clean the fan blades were, or looked inside the oven.

1 comment:

smc said...

Glad to hear the zoo party was a success! I would like to see pictures of the deck and yard, now that it is all latticed-up.