Don’t feel bad if I don’t come to your party. It’s not that I don’t want to be with you to celebrate. It’s that parties scare me.
People at parties act differently. They talk differently. They smile party smiles. They chat party chatter. I watch people at parties, and I see them waiting for the fun to begin. It’s intimidating. I end up like Alice in Wonderland at the Tea Party. My words seem to be in another language.
If I get there early, I’m sure the fun hasn’t happened. If I come in the middle, the fun seems to have started without me. I’m not sure how to join in. If I get there too late, the fun seems to be over.
People say, “Hey, here comes the life of the party.” I think, Uh-oh my life is now over. I’m about to do something too big or too foolish.
To me parties are more like the Serengeti than like my natural habitat. Navigating a party is much harder than a photo safari.
It works better, if I don’t call it a party. If I call it a few friends “getting together,” the pressure seems to come off. I can talk to friends without feeling that “fun responsibility.” Friends don’t expect friends to be effervescent and fun every minute, . . . except maybe at a party.
Fun is so elusive and undefinable. I don’t want to be in charge of it. Sometimes I don’t know I’ve had it until I look back long after it’s over.
I know I had fun once, but don’t ask which time it was.
Oh yeah, then that one special party happens . . . when I lose self-consciousness. Fun falls from the sky like stardust on me . . . yeah then, going back to the real world no fun at all.
I guess I pack too much into when the word parties. I wonder whether I’ll ever outgrow that.
Until then, I’ll keep thinking of them as visitng my friends who are getting together for some occasion. Then, I can have a good time and even be entertaining.
Sometimes I can be the life of the party, as long as it’s not a party.