Monday, December 03, 2007

All That Offering

I have few truly rare traits -- most of my tastes are mainstream; I don't do anything weird or daring or exciting, don't participate in extreme anything, don't venture far from my comfort zones, such as they are. But I suspect I am one of the few people who enjoys cleaning up after a party more than the party itself. There's something deeply lonely about a place that has been returned to itself, the house resuming its usual manor with a sigh when all the people are gone, the leftovers swimming in grease and uneaten misery, the drinks almost all gone except the truly vile ones that even the hard-core lushes can't stomach. You are generally left to do a post-mortem with the other people who have stayed to wipe down the house, do the dishes, clean up the glass. And, of course, this is when the truly excellent gossip begins -- So and so hates her husband! Did you see how she didn't sit next to him all night? God, I give it two months. You get the idea. And then, Man we drank all that -- dear God!

There are people who never speculate about other people, who refuse to talk about the intricacies of human behavior out of respect for the boundaries of good taste. As a person who has drank Everclear out of a Polo bottle, this kind of delicacy is out of my grasp. I can't get comfortable in the living room that nobody sits in, or I can't really appreciate the show towels that people have in their bathrooms for nobody to use. I tend to be a straight, no chaser kind of girl. As a child, my parents would dress me in frilly little gowns and ask me to serve snacks to the guests. I hated it, all that offering. But as time went on and the night got later, I'd drink the remnants of whatever the guests had left behind before moving onto the next thing. And the night would become more magical, and I would begin to talk as if given a potion that made anything possible, even my wishes as I blew out the candles that signalled the party was over.

Michelle's Spell of the Day
"I don't want to say anything because I know I am unable to protect you from the harm that I see." Camille Claudel

Cocktail Hour
I speak often of my old buddy Hank on this blog. Here's an essay of his, "The Faults Of Other People," that can be accessed through this link:

Benedictions and Maledictions
Happy Monday!


Rodney Dangerfield said...

One furburger to go, if you know what I mean.

Cyrano said...

Camille liked big noses and big hands. I told her to stay away from that sculptor, but she wouldn't listen.

Rodin said...

She was an apt student.

Graham Beal said...

You're an up-front kind of guy, Rodin.

Jessica Biel said...

I would've fit in well with both Rodin and Camille.

Tyree Guyton said...

You honkies burn me up.

Walter Kronkite said...

And that's the way it is, Dec. 3, 2007.

Andy Griffith said...

It's too bad Hank couldn't get a job where he wouldn't have to worry about the boss.

Anonymous said...

The important thing is you managed to keep your buns out of the snow.

the walking man said...

What a wonderful essay, Mind your own goddamn business and if I need something believe me I'll ask. He sounds like he was quite a man; that Hank Ballenger. Loved the look me in the eye when you talk to me.

I think if you don't puff so hard on the candles when putting them out the party stays a bit longer than the emptiness of the house after the people are gone.



Pythia3 said...

This is great post, Michelle.

". . . the leftovers swimming in grease and uneaten misery."

"I can't get comfortable in the living room that nobody sits in."

". . . all that offering.

I love the way you expressed this post.

I remember the parties my mom and dad threw . . .and I remember cleaning up the overflowing ash trays and highball glasses with remains of stale whiskey, or whatever.

Love the title too.

Scott said...

I would never want to be lonely, but if I ever wanted to hire someone to write about it, you're my first choice.

JLCGULL said...

Get somebody that can beat OSU. If LSU beats OSU in the BCS, Martin and Carr should be fired from U-M.

MacDawg said...

the comet is coming!

Charles Gramlich said...

That picture in the snow, sitting on the cold concrete gives the lie to you saying you never do anything daring, Michelle.