Volume 92, Issue 12

Thursday, September 24, 1998

write all about it


Honing your house party skills

As the biting wind of fall settles in and it becomes increasingly difficult to bar-hop wearing the uniform tank top and second-skin pants, the good old house party will once again become a weekend mainstay.

This change in venue for weekend partyers is a source of great stress for many. If a Friday or Saturday night at the pub doesn't turn out the way it's supposed to, whether it's the "ex" that shows up or winter line-ups and ill-placed frostbite, the blame will be carelessly pinned on the bar. "Man, that place bit tonight" will be tossed around your group of friends and talk of tomorrow night's plans will take over the conversation.

However, when the party begins and ends at someone's personal home, any mishap, no matter how arbitrary, will stick to the host's reputation like dried beer on a doorknob. The next time that house is offered as solace from the winter cold, the phrase, "I don't know... last time it sucked," will surface, rendering the host black-listed for the remainder of the party season.

If, on the other hand, one can pull off a party that goes down in the books or at least makes Monday morning conversation, the host will bask in the glory of its rehashings for at least a week. Which position would you rather be in?

The host of the house party's fate therefore lies in creating a memorable experience for all – a tall order, but not unreachable. All that's needed is a little trip back to our roots.

While the grade school "pop and chip" parties are of days long past, they contain timeless elements that are too quickly forgotten. By reviving these strategies, your party stands a promising chance of attaining "morning-after" conversation.

1. Always have games – High school seems to be the barrier for this one. Once you hit grade nine, "musical chairs" and "pin the tail on the donkey" are considered activities for children. But look closer. Spinning around, throwing a dart with a tail and fighting over seats, are all elements of the bar scene just on a different level. Just bring out the Pictionary and Scattegories when the party starts to swing and watch how a little friendly competition can spawn a night of primitive hi-jinx.

2. Pop and chips – Have a good supply of pop in the house ready to mix, tease or chase. Chips only logically follow. Munchies. Gotta have the chips.

3. Boy-girl dancing to "put your head on my shoulder" – Needs a little revision this day and age, but the basics still apply. Deep down everyone misses the "frufru" that accompanies asking someone to dance. Remember, hands on shoulders and waists, standing at least an arm's length apart.

4. Truth or Dare – Go on, all you need to start this one is a good "double dare" that you can get out of and then endlessly mock your cohort. Just make sure to remember that "promise to repeat" is for wussies.

This is by no means a comprehensive list of party tricks, but this will get you through the "Carlsberg years."

To Contact The Arts and Entertainment Department: gazette.entertainment@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1998