A Dinner Party

Winter is the season of dinner parties. Excuses to get together with people, but stay indoors, dress up in sweaters and sweater dresses and celebrate when the sun sets early and the ever present fog leaves beads on your scarf and colors your nose.

Early evening: Accepting the invitation

It’ll be great to get out of the house. It’s an excuse to dress up, because, why not?

It’ll be fun. I’ll see people and have lively discussion. It’s my chance to be social and energetic and show that I’m a fun person.

I do things. Yes, I do things with people.

Getting ready

What kind of get-together is this? Are we talking full makeup? Or would that be trying too hard?

And what to wear. Is this too much party? Or should I be safe and go with black? Maybe it’s too sad and dark. But black is safe.

I’ll just add some color with my shoes for some fun. Heels aren’t too much. People wear heels to dinner.

Purse. No purse? Purse. Which purse? The everyday one, not too much. And coat. Definitely coat, scarf, gloves.

Okay, ready.

Wait, lipstick. Always lipstick. Yes, done.

Oh, and the champagne. Your one job. The champagne. How could you forget?

And late, of course.

The (late) entrance

Okay, hi. This is a lot of people. I’ll say hi to as many people as possible, and then just happily ignore the others that are difficult to reach. I’ll be introduced eventually. I don’t want to make a whole disturbance now. It’s pretty unlikely that I’ll ever see them again in my life anyway.

This is a nice spot in the room. Just nod and smile. Don’t forget to ask questions. You can talk less that way.

Yeah, I don’t understand half of what’s going on…but that’s fine. You’re the foreign one. You’re not supposed to understand. It’s a nice excuse anyhow, a nice excuse to not talk. I just feel bad that they’re trying so hard to include me. But I can also see them getting tired of that responsibility. Sorry! It’s okay. It’s okay. I can’t fix that right now.

À table

Ah finally, we’re sitting down to dinner. I can just eat. Eating is a valid excuse. It takes ALL of my attention. It does. Taking the right amount of salad from the bowl. Not looking ridiculous that I can’t get lettuce onto my fork and on a successful journey to the mouth. How to make the lettuce not overly large? Yes, that’s right. Be sure to fit the entire piece in or else you’ll look like a dumb rabbit. Dumb in all senses of the word, considering that you can’t engage in conversation like normal person right now. ALL THE ATTENTION. Okay, that’s normal.

Hm, that wasn’t enough food. I’m definitely still hungry. I thought the “I’m American” disclaimer was well-distributed at this point. There’s not really anything much left though. I can’t be the one to take all of the final drippings.

The bread! Thank God for bread. The bread will do it. Eat the bread.

I hope they don’t expect me to have followed the conversation. My brain is tired. It can only translate so much in a prolonged period of time. I also have the jetlag excuse in my pocket. I must have zoned out for the past five minutes at least. Okay, fine. Try again.

This conversation isn’t particularly exciting. Maybe I’m not actually understanding. But I think I am. Would I be having fun if I was with my own friends? Or is this really just a language thing? Or do people just get boring when they get older? Or am I just more disinterested? I think I’d still be bored if it were my own friends. Maybe I’ve been here too long. Maybe that’s all it is. This is probably what it’s like for outsiders to hear my friends and I hanging out. I’m suddenly so sorry for all of those people that have to sit through us…

Bored. Maybe this is why I don’t come to these things. Just smile. More smiling.

Woo! Dessert! This is cause for celebration.

Post hoc

Dinner, check. We have to be leaving soon. There seems to be lots of talk left in them yet. *sigh* I’m exhausted. But I still look nice.

Okay, yes? Yes?! Coats. I can do that. I have all the things. Coats, gloves, purse.

Bisous! Love you all! We should do this again? Yes, of course! Let’s do this again soon!

*door shuts*

SWEET FREEDOM.

Let’s take a walk.

A walk sounds marvelous.

You march, I march, Jack

January’s more than halfway over and most of us are getting pulled back into the current of “busy.” In part, busy wishing that this TV listing of tomorrow’s inauguration ceremony wasn’t satirical.

This week has been at odds with itself. It started with a day celebrating Martin Luther King Jr., a warrior for racial justice, economic equity, and peace. It ends with a day that hands the keys to the castle to a man whose every action, comment (and tweet) goes against these same principles. Presumably due to the past year’s events, even more of the media’s coverage of Martin Luther King day moved beyond his reveries. A grittier, more conflicted portrait was painted, making the case for imperfect dreamers who aren’t afraid to colour outside the lines, to echo inconvenient truths.

Speaking of inconvenient truths, the World Economic Forum (held this week in Davos) released its 2017 Global Risks Report citing “economic inequality, societal polarization, and intensifying environmental dangers” as top “contributors” to global development over the next decade, threatening peace, wealth and health. Nothing new, but given that “democracies” are shifting towards the political equivalent of hands over ears, eyes wide shut, twitter tongue stuck out on all these risks, we need the dreamers (which I suspect includes whoever is reading this) to step up and step out.

An opportunity to do so is coming up this weekend with the Women’s March on Washington (or Women’s March for Dignity) on Jan 21st (all genders welcome). The platform goes beyond women’s rights and takes an intersectional approach that includes civil rights, justice in the criminal system, worker’s rights, LGBTQIA rights, rights of people living with disabilities, immigration reform, and environmental protection. The governing principle states that “Gender Justice is Racial Justice is Economic Justice.” As of now, in addition to the march in DC, 615 sister marches have been planned globally. You can check here to find the one near you!

Twenty Seven(teen)

Happy 2017 people! We’ve seen the memes, the tweets, the snaps – 2016 was an unpopular year. In the end, it became a bit of an exaggerated villain if you ask me… given that humanity doesn’t necessarily do all that much better on average, but still – enough maniacal events call 2016 their home that it’s safe to say we’re all hoping for better.

I, for one, am going to approach this new year with so much love that it’ll give the ending of every Hallmark holiday movie a run for its money. I’m throwing love at the problem (partly because that’s basically my only form of capital at the moment).

Onward and upward ❤