You had your nails done, wore a smashing outfit, and gave your makeup a bit of sparkle. Even your hair looked like it came out of a shampoo commercial. You arrived at the party, nervous to meet new people but confident you'd loosen up and have a great time.
The host snapped up the stuffed mushrooms you slaved over with a quick thank-you and turned away. Your polite attempts at small talk with other guests fell flat. Nobody made you feel particularly welcome.
You began to feel like an bug in a jar. You itched to flee, but you promised yourself you'd get out of the house more often. You know you'll never meet a decent man if you're not at least willing to get out of the house more often!
So you beat your way to the drink table, making conversation with the person standing next to you, only to be rebuffed. You retreated to a corner of the room, sipping away in a desperate attempt to look casual (while ignoring the ever-tightening knot in your stomach), and fought off a fantasy about going home, getting into your pajamas, and pulling out your Bridget Jones DVDs.
Instead, you forced yourself to stick it out a bit longer, only to end up thinking, "I'm useless. All these people are having a great time, and I'm standing around like a giant pimple. What's wrong with me?"
There is nothing wrong with you. Nothing at all. You merely accepted an invitation to a bad party.
"But," you say. "If it was such a bad party, why was everyone else having such a great time?"
The thing is, sometimes you'll end up at an event where other people have a good time because they know each other, and they don't have the manners or the inclination to include a new face in the merriment. (There will be other times, though, when you'll find yourself at an event where people know each other but gladly welcome you into the fold.)
And, remember, just because an individual hosts a party doesn't mean he or she knows the first thing about being a good host (which would be making sure that that no guest is propped in a corner feeling like a skin condition). Hosting a party is a responsibility. It's fun, but it's definitely a responsibility.
Bad hosts throw parties that are all about them. If you end up at one of these jerk fests, stick around for an hour. If things don't improve, say thanks (that is, if you can get the attention of the jerk to thank) and get out of there.
Then, instead of reliving the miserable time you endured, pat yourself on the back for getting out in the first place. Believe it or not, you've taken a step toward changing your life.
The next time you're offered an invitation, be bold and accept it. Better yet, show 'em how it's done and throw a party of your own. Super Bowl Sunday will soon be upon us. Make the most of it.
Get your house party-ready in no time!.