Posts Tagged ‘40th birthday parties’

The Mild-Mannered Lawyer and I recently found ourselves waving the ‘Suburban Mums’ flag at an inner-city warehouse-conversion party full of cool people wearing ironic hats. We had declared ourselves early in the piece by declining dinner (“I ate with the kids at 5!”) and yawning a lot (“Wow, is it as late as eight-thirty already??”).

However, we were Suburban Mums With A Difference. We had to leave the party early – and not because we had to get back to the babysitter or because one of our kids was in a gymnastics exhibition at 8am the next morning. We had to leave the party early because we had another party to go to. Yes, we were party-hopping.

Had the cool people actually noticed we were leaving to go to another party, I do believe that might have been our ‘O Captain My Captain’ moment. In a way, it was lucky that they didn’t notice because I would have felt compelled to tell them that standing on chairs was dangerous and then confess that our other party was 30km from the CBD and that we were taking along our own bedding, toothbrushes and jimmy-jams. They probably would have thrown their ironic hats at us in disgust.

To be honest, it’s always a little hard to arrive at a party in full swing, clutching your own pillow to your chest. Luckily, my dear friend Muliercula (whose 40th was our second and final stop on the party circuit) was quick to show us our room for the night and then direct us to the Make Your Own Cocktail table to help us get into the mood.

Many double-strength ‘Salty Dogs’ and glasses of french champagne later, we were probably a little too much in the mood because before I knew it, we were singing (and dancing) full-pelt to Tears For Fears.

“I LOVE TEARS FOR FEARS!” I shouted over the music to the MML.

“Yeah! Roland Whatshisfacewiththebigteeth!” the MML shouted back. And I gave her the thumbs-up and kept dancing and singing until I remembered Tears For Fears were responsible for ‘Sowing The Seeds of Love ‘, a song most notable for being a pastiche of The Beatles and being about semen.  Feeling a bit queasy all of a sudden thinking of Roland Whatshisfacewiththebigteeth’s semen, I sat down on the couch.

The MML joined me while someone changed over the records (Yes, we were listening to vinyl).

“I’m going to our room to remove my stockings,” I whispered to the MML. I was feeling a little hot.

“And what am I supposed to do with that information?” the MML asked.

“You’re supposed to wait two minutes and then follow me there,” I replied.

Now, before you start jumping to conclusions, I was concerned that, in attempting to remove my stockings under the influence, I’d forget to remove my shoes first and end up falling over and hurting myself  – or, worse still, damaging private property. I mean, what’s the point in taking your legal counsel to a party if they’re not going to help you avoid a potential lawsuit? Shuh! I guess I could have said “If I’m not back in two minutes, please come and check I haven’t fallen face-first into a double bass” but where’s the fun in that?

Anyway, it doesn’t matter. I didn’t fall face first into a double bass and the whole point of this post is that us Suburban Mums partied as hard as anyone wearing an ironic hat and the subsequent headache that I still have, four days later, I’ve worn as a badge of honour, people! Except it’s now less a badge of honour and more a pain in the arse. Not to say that my head is an arse, mind, although you could say I got it from acting like an arse. Look, I’m going to end this post right now. Sheesh.

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One of the benefits of having small children is that you never have to worry about grooming yourself. Most mornings I leave the house looking not so much like I’d just rolled out of bed but that the bed had rolled over me and  vomited its breakfast all over me in the process. By the time I arrive at any evening event, I inevitably look like I’ve come straight from the Prom Night in Carrie – but, in my mind at least, I’m always forgiven and even celebrated for that small section of my left shoe not coated in child spit. I have small children, you know.

However, I know that I won’t get away with that excuse at my fashionista friend GT’s upcoming 40th, especially since I will be in a completely different state from my children. I’m going to have to lift my game, perhaps even brush my hair and put some lipstick on. I’m going to have to wear clothes not held together with velcro or safety pins, goddammit.

When we spoke on the phone the other night, GT didn’t help things by telling me who else was invited.

“Eek!” I said. “They all sound cool and interesting and well-dressed and I’m just, you know, a stay-at-home mum…”.

“Oh, but you’re not! You’re an internationally-acclaimed award-winning blogger!” GT said, kindly.

“Some award! I didn’t get a trophy or a certificate. All I’ve got to show for it is a stupid JPEG and even then, I had to make the JPEG myself!” I said. “Even if I print it out the JPEG and walked around saying ‘Oooh, look at me and my JPEG!’, it’s not really that impressive.”

I mean, honestly, there should have at least been a Special Occasion glow-in-the-dark winner’s sash that I could have worn beauty-queen style to such events, with a light-up crown and a matching sceptre with a hollowed out stem for holding vodka. And yes, I have thought about this a lot.

Anyway, GT probably knew I was going to start lamenting my lack of Bloggies-branded vodka-sceptre again and so swiftly changed the topic.

“Oh, and [Famous Person] will be there,” she mentioned, casually.

“[Famous Person]?” I squeaked.

“Yes, [Famous Person].”

“[Famous Person] will be there! Oh. My. God. [Famous Person]…” I said, before adding once more for good measure: “[Famous Person]!”

“We seem to be saying [Famous Person]’s name a lot here,” GT mentioned.

“And so we should! He’s [Famous Person] after all! Wow… Oh, I’m definitely bringing along some ‘Not Drowning, Mothering’ business cards now. And I’ll print out my JPEG and stick it on the back with sticky tape so that it looks like they’re laminated on and then I’ll give [Famous Person] one and he’ll instantly whip out his iPhone and become my fan on Facebook or ‘like’ me or whatever the hell it is that you do on facebook these days. Oh, GT! I’m so glad I invited myself to your 40th now!” I enthused.

Yes, I was excited. I knew that nobody would be talking about my mumsy-opshop-chic-zombie look at all at the party. In fact, I could wear whatever the hell I liked and it wouldn’t matter. Nobody would be looking at my clothes. Instead, they’d be all whispering to each other “Did you see that woman handing out business cards wrapped in sticky tape? Yes, the one wearing the home-made sash and the plastic crown, claiming the bottle of vodka she was carrying was a sceptre? She’s, like, so hot right now…”

Man, I’m totally going to wow that room.

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My glamourous friend GT is thinking on having a sit down dinner for 40 guests to celebrate her 40th. This is nicely in line with my own “seven friends for your seventh birthday party” rule for Mr Justice last year. Hopefully, however, GT won’t end up like me, scrounging through the cupboards to make up last minute party bags for the extra guests that I myself invited because I couldn’t follow my own goddamn rule. Because there will be party-bags, right, GT? I mean, how will anyone ever leave the party if there aren’t party bags? 

And yes, you can tell that I don’t go to many parties for the Over-Seven Set. 

Anyway, the most exciting thing about GT’s birthday party plans – which she shared with me during a recent telephone conversation – was that she seemed to be implying that I might actually be invited. 

The implication was enough to make me punch the air and shout “I made the Top 40!” the minute I got off the phone to her. I then rushed to book my airline tickets to fly to the event before she could set me straight. 

The Friendship Gods were poised to punish me, however. Moments after I’d booked my flight, I received a text message from the Mild-Mannered Lawyer asking for her house key back, which had been in my possession since I’d fed her cat over the New Year. 

I was gutted. The MML seemed to be implying, with the withdrawal of her key, that I was no longer in her Top 40. It was like she was giving me a clear message that said “You are now dead to me” –  although it also could be read as “Can I please have my key back?”.

Anyway, after a few more text exchanges, it turned out she wanted the key back so she could leave it for her cleaner.

I was still outraged. What had her cleaner ever done for her, huh? (Other than clean her house). Would she ever be able to ring her cleaner at 1 o’clock in the morning because she was drunk and had locked herself out and (maybe, just maybe) had thrown up on her own shoes? Unlikely.

Not that I’d ever done that for the MML, mind you. But I had always considered myself On Call. I took my job as a Key Holder very seriously and had even been considering putting it on my CV – something along the lines of:

December 29th, 2009 – present
Position: Key holder
Responsibilities: Holding the key. Not losing the key. Being able to retrieve the key when asked for the key. Occasionally feeding the cat, using the key, but taking care not to feed the cat the key. 

But now, thanks to the untimely end of my key-holding duties,  I’d have to put an end date on the job and “December 29th, 2009 – January 12th, 2010” doesn’t look quite so impressive. Because it really did look impressive before that amendment. No, really. I mean, consider the other options: few employers are going to be blown away by the fact I can change the crap-filled nappy of a standing child with only two baby wipes in record time. And really, it’d help to have something in the EXPERIENCE section of my CV that didn’t pre-date Aussie Legend™  Johnny Farnham’s first Farewell Tour (and for the record, Johnny: having a comeback tour only four years after your last tour is a little like saying goodbye to someone you’ve run into at the supermarket only to see them three aisles later standing in front of the condom section. It’s awkward for everyone.)

ANYWAY, a few days after I returned the MML’s key, I found myself a whopping twenty minutes late meeting the MML for a coffee. My reason? I couldn’t find my carkeys. Turns out they were in the deep freezer.

Of course they were. Because in summer, a set of ice-cold keys is an asset, right?

Yes, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it, just in case anyone else is considering me for the role of Key Holder. Which I hope someone is, because I honestly need the gig. In fact, I’m becoming increasingly convinced that my inclusion in GT’s Top 40 depends on it and nobody wants to see me fly interstate only to stand stand outside her party, pathetically holding my own keys, do they? Sheesh.

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