Well, of course, I don’t actually hate parties, not as such, but sometimes there are things about certain parties that make me feel uncomfortable and cringey. And no, it’s not the agonising choice of which car keys to pick out of the bowl. Honestly, you people have filthy minds!
The first thing, and probably the thing that the most people can identify with, is the mortifying matter of smalltalk. It is a terribly crippling illness: the inability to come up with even the lowest quality of smalltalk. I always end up spurting out something either mind-numbingly boring or wildly inappropriate. Of course, this mainly applies to parties (or worse, the dreaded “Functions”) where there are plenty of people you don’t know.
However, even at parties that are just among friends and/or colleagues, people I know well and like spending time with, I sometimes end up feeling like a complete idiot, out of place and awkward. Why is this, you may be wondering? Well because if there is a bit of background noise, loud music or a lot of people talking, I can’t hear a thing. I was born completely deaf in my right ear, and although most of the time I barely notice it (unless I’m listening to the beatles), in any noisy situation my working ear soon becomes overwhelmed and end up as useless as a bikini model in a gay bar: there’s plenty going on, but it’s not picking anything up and it gets confused.
So a drink and a chat in a quiet pub is fine by me, but as soon as the crowds arrive, and the music gets turned up to eleven, I might as well go home, because otherwise I’ll just be sitting there grinning and nodding like an imbecile on morphine, while for all I know the person talking to me is telling me about how their puppy just died of cancer.
I guess if I still had the energy to dance I could just head for the floor and boogie so I wouldn’t have to face the torture of conversation paintball (it looks like fun, but it’s quite hit and miss and actually rather painful), but usually by the evening, I have the energy of a small, tired mollusc. And I hate it when people try to drag me on to the dancefloor. Because I WANT to go and dance, I love dancing, but if you had to move a metric weight in triple figures and Shake It On Down on a pair of flat and damaged feet, I bet you wouldn’t have much energy left either by the end of the day.
So there we have it, like beer, and haggis, and so many other things, I like the idea of partying, and I completely understand that other people love it, but unfortunately I just can’t seem to stomach it. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ll be heading home to pop on my tartan slippers and flannel dressing gown and work on my 3,000,000 piece puzzle of an empty bit of sky. I’ve almost finished the edges.