We survived the Big Birthday Bash recently – not for the men-children though, but for Father of a Man-Child. He decided at the age of 55 (yes he is WAY older than me) that the time was right for a birthday party, and not just a small, intimate, grown up gathering, but a proper Rock’n’Roll birthday bash, complete with a live band at the local RSL (oh yes, we’re talking very up-market)!!
To show he has grown up and is quite capable of being a fully independent thinker (he was definitely making a not very subtle point to me his controlling wife), he proceeded to organise the entire party himself, including invitations (pretty cool actually), invite list (yes, I got no say at all, luckily he did extend the invitation to my immediate family), venue, band, and food.
At some stage, I did manage to prise some details from him about the food menu he was planning, which is when I decided to exert my influence. Now there is cheap and cheerful, and then there is downright awful. I explained that if he wanted me to attend and not die of absolute embarrassment in front of my friends (yes he invited some of them too), that he was not going to serve 4’n’20 pies and sausage rolls and sandwiches from the local deli! Yes I know it’s the RSL (in need of a serious update, but still a fabulous venue), however we can still provide gourmet food even if it’s not in keeping with the hideous carpet and outdated decor of the place.
I also gave him some tips about having hired help for food service – I for one wasn’t planning on spending the party in the bowels of the RSL, and I explained that the men-children were not equipped to manage the food either (unless you’d like every guest to end up with salmonella poisoning).
I was inspired to order some last-minute helium balloons to decorate the place, which was our little birthday surprise for Father of a Man-Child. He definitely liked that, almost as much as Sister of a Man-Child who could barely contain her excitement for 24 hours!
So how did the day go? Well I have to say I think it was a seriously fun party. The food was a hit (only some gourmet snags leftover), the band was a hit (of course they were loud and you couldn’t hear yourself think, but hey, that’s what it was like when I saw INXS at the Prospect Hill Hotel all those years ago and you could feel the music vibrating through your body), Tambourine Man was a hit (aka Father of a Man-Child in superb wig and on song), and the venue worked well. Like any successful party, naturally it continued on into the evening with a few ratbags who clearly didn’t have to get up for work the next day, unlike yours truly. 🙂
There was one small hiccup on the day, which centred on the dress code. The invitation clearly stated “Dress Code: Strictly Status Quo, Rolling Stones and the like.” Naturally, I ignored it completely, and when any of my friends asked, I told them it was optional, in keeping with Father of a Man-Child’s non-committal attitude. His advice – “just wear jeans and a leather jacket, that’s rock’n’roll anyway”. Not surprisingly there was a mixed bag of dress code at the party, ranging from the likes of me (not an ounce of rocker), to the token t-shirt borrowed from a teenage son, worn under the leather jacket (I swear there were quite a few “originals” at the party), to my friend, Mother Who Works, who shamed us all with her fabulous rocker style on the day. I thought she looked fabulous, definitely BOG, however it seems she nearly died of embarrassment and kept telling me she wanted to go home and change – I am sure there were many envious looks thrown her way for those killer boots and white faux fur jacket.
The men-children turned up for the party – one was very helpful, the other eventually arrived late and left early (sigh). They looked thoroughly bored during the entire event, but I really don’t care – it was important they were there.
I’ve been dropping hints about how good the venue was hoping the boys might consider it for their 18th birthday party/ies. I think I am delusional however – one probably thinks it’s the most down-market place you could ever have a party, and the other one would probably rather not have a party than have his embarrassing family at his 18th, such is his connectivity with us right now. Ah, the joys!
Anyway, Happy 55th Birthday Tambourine Man, it was a great bash!!
If you’d like to see Mother Who Works in her splendid outfit, you can read about her Bridget Jones moment here.