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So, you're in charge of a party...

Vrecknidj

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Okay, here's the scenario. You have a good friend or significant other or spouse or whatever and he or she says to you "I really need for you to throw me this big party, I need you to do all the work, pull everything together, and it has to rock."

So, what do you do?

Dave

PS Yes, this happened to me once, and I lived. I'm curious how you'd respond.
 

Cogwulf

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Plan the bestest, awesomest, rockingest party ever. But forget to invite anyone.
 

Reverse Transcriptase

"you're a poet whether you like it or not"
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The parties I throw are for college students or recently graduated people. SO:
Get an apartment or a house where the parents won't be home, or don't give a shit.
Get a 30 rack of cheap beer (I prefer Coors Light. PBR, Bud, Miller are all good options.) Get some cheap and kinda nasty alcohol. (Smirnoff, cheap rum, maybe whiskey, etc.) Tell everyone that BYOB is encouraged, but not required, since there'll be cheap beer and cheap alcohol. Most people have standards that are a tiny bit higher than that, and they'll bring something, which is good to help variety.

So, when you're inviting people you should give personal invites. I've tried just blasting out messages on facebook, people often get less excited by those. It's better to personally private-message, email, text or phone-call the people you want to come. If you're organizing a party for someone else, you can still call all their friends.

If you have messy roommates, make sure they clean up their shit before the party. Make sure you have paper towels, normal towels, plastic cups and a clean bathroom. This would also be a good time to put in fresh bong water. Hide all your valuables/breakables. (I had a friend lose two bongs at a party. I almost lost a grinder, but the would-be thief was wise and "pretended to find it".)

And uh, yeah. That's all. Invite the closer friends over an hour or two before to pre-game, that way you already have a core of drunk/buzzed people at the beginning of the party, which really helps everything flow.

Have a deck of cards around, to play King's cup or other stuff. If you can get a beruit table going (just a piece of plywood at table-level) that'd be good too. Make sure you know what your house rules are, because people have a lot of different rules.

And finally, appointment "commanders". I was the co-commander of my parties, along with my roommate Mike. That way if one of us passed out or puking or on the phone, there is still another person to deal with anything that arises.

If the cops had ever come to one of my parties, I would have told Mike to get all the underage people into one bedroom, make sure there's not booze in that room, and then also make sure that everyone else is quiet. Because he would need to do that while I talked with cops. (Remember, you don't have to talk to cops, and they can't come into the house/apartment without a warrant. The best thing to do is to come out of the house and close the door behind you, and talk outside, that way the cops don't construe the open door as an invitation to come in, and they don't eye around.)
 

Da Blob

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Live entertainment is always a big plus, one might be surprised at the quality of musicians one can hire for a night's entertainment. Renting a banquet room at a cheap hotel is usually a good investment over hosting at a private domicile. If one is on a limited budget acquiring a large quantity of medicinal grain alcohol and making punch with it saves some big bucks in that regard. Contests are always fun for party goers and they are helpful in breaking the ice and getting everyone in the mood to relax...

We always notified a local nursing school when we were having a party and helped with transportation when necessary. It never hurt to have a few unattached females at a party...
 

EditorOne

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OOOH OOOH I know the answer to this one!

1. Invite more people than you have places to sit.
2. Turn down the lights.
3. Serve alcohol.

Not enough places to sit means people are forced to move around. Or dance.
Turning down the lights emboldens the shy to do things like move around, talk and even dance.
Alcohol loosens the inhibitions of the shy and allows them to more easily do things like move around, talk and even dance.

I had to coordinate 17 or 18 wedding receptions as the event coordinator for our new giant firehall; the receptions helped bring us darn good revenue. I learned from watching a variety of caterers and wedding planners, and found that people seemed to have the most fun when all three of the noted conditions were present, and correspondingly less fun as they were removed. So a Baptist wedding (no alcohol) featured a lot fewer people having fun than a non-teetotaler assembly, for instance.
If getting people to dance is indeed part of your definition of "success" for a party, and you've got a mixed bag of introverts and extroverts or you just plain don't know, there's a fourth point:

4. Control the music. If you want the most people possible to get out on the dance floor, honest to golly you want one of those old slow doowop love songs from the 50s and 60s -- "Only You" by the Platters, "Stand by Me," etc. There is less involved in dancing to those toons and again the shy will venture forth from the shadows, and even those here who are in their teens will probably at least recognize the melody lines. Then you can pick up the pace; once they're out there a surprising number will stay for more movement-oriented dancing, especially if Point Three has been fully engaged. :D Line dances have also been a good thing, for oh about three centuries, anyway. There's not much difference between some boot-slidin' country-western line dances, the Virginia Reel or The Stroll, they all allow groups of strangers to join in a simple ritual that brings them together and makes the rest of the night go better.

If all else fails put on an "exercise to the oldies" video by whatsis name, Richard Simmons, and there will surely be a certain number of extroverts who will jump at the chance to show how fit and masterful they are. That's fun for them and fun for those of us who think the words "braying" and "extrovert" were always intended to be inseparable. :cool:

Just some ideas. They pretty much work for all ages and are aimed primarily at getting wallflowers like us off the wall....
 

Sugarpop

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:eek:

Parties?

You do them?

Without computers?

:eek:
 

sagewolf

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Ummm... buy a load of beer/spirits/cider and hope everyone gets too pissed to realize how awful my party-planning skillz are? :o No, if this is for a friend, it demands the ultimate sacrifice: interpersonal communication. :eek: :storks:

Which is to say, I find two more people : one of whom must be an ESFP, because if anyone knows what a party is it's going to be one of those unfathomable creatures, and the other should be a J, so that they can balance out the incorrigible P-nesses of myself and the party animal. Then, combining my personal knowledge of my friend and their preferences in social gatherings, the conscientiousness and planning/organisation skills of the J, and the party/fun know-how of the SP... we might have a good party.

Failing that, just pipe laughing gas into the immediate vicinity of the party. Maybe in the hallway, so you have to walk through and absorb it to get to the party, but once you're in the real party area, there's no more risk of getting too much.

Unless you figure out there's something really fun about that hallway. :p
 

ckm

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Say, "if you really care about me you won't do this to me".

If they persist, run far far away.
 

flow

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I create an epic music playlist that ensures people both recognize great songs and are exposed to new ones they'll dig. And then I encourage intoxication by all, be it through alcohol or marijuana.. THEN, I chat up the most awkward/introverted/sober people about random topics and get them comfortable enough to enjoy themselves along with everyone else.

party = success
 

Vrecknidj

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Lots of interesting ideas in here so far. Some of them a little powerful for my tastes, but, I'm liking what I'm seeing (and I'm hoping some other INTPs are taking notes).

Dave
 

Trebuchet

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Hire my daughter's babysitter and her little sister. Those two young teens are brilliant at planning parties. They threw a 50-person surprise party for their parents' 25th anniversary, did all the decorations and invitations and it was amazing. I'd give them a budget and tell them to do whatever they wanted.

Failing that, PM Editor One and get more good advice.

If I had to plan it, I would stress out, cry a lot, and forget something important, like drinks. I throw a great Thanksgiving, because I practice making turkey and mashed potatoes and gravy all year long, and I only invite people who don't criticize. Anything beyond that is beyond me.
 

Zero

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First of all, I slap that ass hole for demanding something like that from me in the first place.

Then, assuming we have no budget and this can be a little unrealistic. We rent out that Chuckie Cheeze that's been going to hell since 1998 and has finally decided to shut down. They allow us to bring whatever we want to destroy or strip the stupid mechanical show and then, using the outlets for the old games we hook up all of our computers, TVs, video games. We'd probably put some of the video gaming inside that play place thing. Assuming it's big enough and if it isn't we'd take an axe to it and make it work.

We'd get to bring any food in we wanted and there'd be a ton of it, because who wants to eat CC's?

This is assuming that the person who asked and the people who come are friends of mine. Like they're the sort of people I'd actually get along with.

Of course at some point I'd probably get bored or need to recluse. Assuming I have an e-reader or computer with me I'd probably find a spare net to lay on and read or something.
 

echoplex

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I'm with flow, I'd try to make an awesome playlist, although I'd probably want some input from people who will be attending, because I don't think most of the music I like appeals to most people. It would be hard to please everyone though, and it's inevitable there would be music that at least some people hate.

Actually, screw that. Enough alcohol and people will dance to anything. You could play elevator music and probably get away with it. lol

Otherwise, you might need a cattle prod to get some people (aka me) to actually socialize and, dare I say, have fun.
 

flow

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haha I certainly built up a reputation of controlling the music at parties when I was in college.. I'd even commandeer other people's ipods at other people's parties as soon as I was drunk. Basically, I'm really good at playing songs the collective college conscious wants to hear. So I'd casually go over to their ipod when they weren't watching it or I'd ask if I could browse their stuff and then start talking to them about bands they had on there that I liked... and then I'd play a song and people would go craaazy about it.. and then I'd just kind of keep playing songs... for the rest of the night. Yep, I like to run that shit, and I rarely get complaints. My friends started callin' me dj bk (my initials), though I'm apprehensive about nicknames, even if they mean well.. I hate labels.

So yeah, when I'm runnin' shit (or even when I'm not suppose to be), I'm in charge of the music. I take requests, sometimes. Usually I do what I want and you'll like it anyways. woooohhh!:D
 

Cogwulf

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From my own experience, it seems to me that it can't be considered a real party unless the music is too loud to be able to talk to other people.
 

nickgray

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A) Pick either someone else's place or do it outside.
B) Buy tons of cheap (but somewhat good) alcohol.
C) Buy a shitload of pre-sliced (a bit more than bite-sized) chicken breasts and marinate them. It's called Shashlik.
D) Get somebody to roast the Shashlik, then take a couple of beers and find yourself a nice quiet place. Come back once in a while for the chicken.
 

chloé

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Ask what my hourly rate will be.
 

Claverhouse

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Socializing for Introverts 101

The word party always reminds me of the Donner Party.




Claverhouse :phear:
 

eudemonia

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I had the most awesome party this summer with 90 guests. It went really well and had lots of compliments afterwards. Secret of success:

my esfj friend - who's greatly into detail and has tons of contacts. She got the caterers in, bought the flowers, bossed me around, came dress shopping with me, bought dinky little napkins with hearts on them, made the tables look fantastic etc

alcohol - tons of it all flowing freely. Bought more than we needed and then I didn't have to worry about it running out

fantastic live band

went completely over the top - we redid our marriage vows after 25 years of marriage and I wore a pink wedding dress! It reminded everyone of their weddings at a time when a lot of us are going to funerals :(

great food

table planning - putting people together who we thought would get on but then encouraging people to mix afterwards just in case they didn't

a bonfire with guitars and hotdogs for those who wanted to stay out till sunrise

Beautiful marquee.

Okay - so it bankrupted us but it was the last time we will ever do this, so we just went for it.
 

Cavallier

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RT and Flow really do have the right idea.

Most of the parties I've been to I've ended up organizing for some stupid reason. A good music list sets the mood and is essential to a happy crowd. PBR is the best for cheap beer because at the very least it doesn't taste like Rat Piss (Yes, I went there) like Corona, Budweiser, Bush, Miller, and just about any other mass produced American beer. (I'm a beer snob alright?!?) Have a beer pong table in one corner for everyone who likes a physical game or tournament. Have a tv in another for those who start to veg out early on or for introverts to have something to stare at instead of each other. Have some cards because you can't have a good party without somebody wanting to teach everybody else a drinking game they played "that one time that was really cool". A table full of food for people to stand around while getting to know one another is a must. Sharing food is a great way to get people to open up. Also, a table full of food will keep the DD's entertained and not drinking.

Lastly (and this is key), it's nice to have a place with chairs out of the rain set outside for smoking and cooling off. This will keep the party going for longer. The house/apartment is always too hot after a couple of hours and our bodies feel hot from the alcohol so it's nice to slip outside and take a few puffs off a cigar/joint/cigarette. I prefer a cigar plus it has the added benefit of being legal while weirding out the cops. As a 20 something female with uncontrollable wavy red hair and an extremely calm demeanor I act as a surprise to any cops who find me sitting on the front porch cooling off with a cigar. They usually don't even ask to come into the house. :D

Oh, and NO STAIRS if you can help it. Otherwise somebody will fall down the stairs at some point. It's really only a matter of time.

@Eudemonia: That sounds wonderful!
 

echoplex

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From my own experience, it seems to me that it can't be considered a real party unless the music is too loud to be able to talk to other people.
I'm not exactly a party person, but I think the idea is to let your body do the talking. Your mind will be incapacitated soon enough anyway.
 

Darby

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I almost threw one for my 18th birthday, my mom was going to be out of town, and it took me almost a week to realized that every time I go to a party, I go home and wish I had never gone.

but my initial plan, was to have two of my friends choose who was to go, and what to eat/drink, and I would supply music(as a few of my friends play in small local bands), and the location(empty house), also, I was tempted to see if i could finish the foundation for our shed in the side yard to use as a stage, and get noise permits, none of which happened (how suprising, such big plans, none of which got close to getting completed)
 

vurt

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I would find a nice spot away from the city to have the party, assuming this is in the summer. It should be fairly secluded but large enough to park the cars that will show up. The nicest place I've seen so far was a sort of unofficial campground beside a river near the Rocky Mountains. I'd hire some friends the day before to help me drop as much wood as possible at the site.

The day of the party, as night falls, we'd start up a big bonfire that'll burn until the wee hours of the morning. Either someone would bring a generator with a portable stereo system or people would take turns playing music from their car.

Drinks are had, food is cooked over the fire, someone starts shooting off some fireworks for the hell of it. At the end of the night everyone retires to their tents, or sleep in their car.

I've been to a few of these things over the years, they've always been a lot of fun. It feels great not to have to worry about noise complaints, or things being broken, or drinks being spilled on your carpet, or anything really.
 

EditorOne

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I would find a nice spot away from the city to have the party, assuming this is in the summer. It should be fairly secluded but large enough to park the cars that will show up. The nicest place I've seen so far was a sort of unofficial campground beside a river near the Rocky Mountains. I'd hire some friends the day before to help me drop as much wood as possible at the site.

The day of the party, as night falls, we'd start up a big bonfire that'll burn until the wee hours of the morning. Either someone would bring a generator with a portable stereo system or people would take turns playing music from their car.
QUOTE]

We used to do this illicitly a lot in the summers when I was a kid in southern New Jersey. It wasn't possible any more even in the 1960s to do it on the Atlantic beaches, too built up, but there were abandoned sand quarries on the mainland with swimming holes and sandy beaches that were away from people, also spots just back in the piney woods where perhaps an electric transmission line and a couple of woods roads crossed (multiple exits in case the police noticed the bonfire from afar). We simply didn't spend the night, it was a mix of local kids and kids from the resorts and kids from the many three conditions for success: No place to sit except on a log, darkness, alcohol, and the music was variable. :) It was indeed a lot of fun for everyone, and it was surprising how the common goal of just having fun brought together a lot of strangers.
 

Vrecknidj

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I had the most awesome party this summer with 90 guests. It went really well and had lots of compliments afterwards.

...

Okay - so it bankrupted us but it was the last time we will ever do this, so we just went for it.
I like you even a little more than I already did.

:)

Dave
 
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