Rating Your Party
by Dave Barry
If you threw a party, the worst thing you could have done was throw
the kind of party where your guests wake up today and call you up to
say they had a nice time. Now you'll be expected to throw another
party next year.
What you should have done was throw the kind of party where your
guests wake up several days from now and call their lawyers to find
out if they've been indicted for anything. You want your guests to be
so anxious to avoid a recurrence of your party that they immediately
start planning parties of their own, a year in advance, just to
prevent you from having another one.
So next time, make sure your party reaches the correct Festivity
Festivity Level One:
Your guests are chatting amiably with each other, admiring your
Christmas-tree ornaments, singing carols around the upright piano,
sipping at their drinks and nibbling at hors d'oeuvres.
Festivity Level Two:
Your guests are talking loudly - sometimes to each other and
sometimes to nobody at all, rearranging your Christmas-tree
ornaments, singing "I Gotta Be Me" around the upright piano, gulping
their drinks and wolfing down hors d'oeuvres.
Festivity Level Three:
Your guests are arguing violently with inanimate objects, singing "I
Can't Get No Satisfaction," gulping other people's drinks, wolfing
down Christmas-tree ornaments and placing hors d'oeuvres in the
upright piano to see what happens when the little hammers strike.
Festivity Level Four:
Your guests have hors d'oeuvres smeared all over their naked bodies,
are performing a ritual dance around the burning Christmas tree. The
piano is missing.
You want to keep your party somewhere around Level Three, unless you
rent your home and own firearms, in which case you can go to Level
Four. The best way to get to Level Four is eggnog.
Eggnog is a traditional holiday drink invented by the English. Many
people wonder where the word "eggnog" comes from. The first syllable
comes from the English word "egg," meaning, "egg." I don't know where
the "nog" comes from.
To make eggnog, you'll need rum, whiskey, wine, gin and, if they are
in season, eggs. Combine all ingredients in a large, festive bowl.
Then induce your guests to drink this mixture.
If your party is successful, the police will knock on your door,
unless your party is very successful, in which case they will lob
tear gas through your living-room window. As host, your job is to
make sure they don't arrest anybody. Or if they're dead set on
arresting someone, your job is to make sure it isn't you. The best
way to do this is to show a lot of respect for their uniforms and
assure them you're not doing anything illegal. Here's how to handle
Police: Good evening. Are you the host?
Police: We've been getting complaints about this party.
You: About the drugs?
You: About the guns, then? Is somebody complaining about the guns?
Police: No, the noise.
You: Oh, the noise. Well, that makes sense, because there are no
guns or drugs here. (An enormous explosion is heard in the
background.) Or fireworks. Who's complaining about the noise? The
Police: No, the neighbors fled inland hours ago. Most of the recent
complaints have come from Pittsburgh. Do you think you could ask the
host to quiet things down?
You: No problem. (At this point, a Volkswagen bug with primitive
religious symbols drawn on the doors emerges from the living room and
roars down the hall, past the police and out the front door onto the
lawn, where it smashes into a tree. Eight guests tumble out onto the
grass, moaning.) See? Things are starting to wind down.