Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Introvert Party Hosting
Old 12-13-2015, 01:51 PM   #1
Full time employment: Posting here.
jjquantz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 846
Introvert Party Hosting

DW and I are cleaning up today after hosting our 28th (?) annual Holiday Party. Many of our friends wonder how two people who are as quiet and introverted as we are can host such a large/great party. Here are a few things we have learned.

When we host a party:

1) We control the guest list - the only people who are going to be there are people we like (or at least tolerate). Also, we won't have to meet any strangers.
2) We control the noise level. It's our music and our volume settings.
3) We always have excuses to end a conversation. "Uh sorry, I just heard DW call me." "I need to go check on the wine." "There's the doorbell, be right back." "Time to put some more "whatever" in the oven."
4) We can direct the interactions. "Oh, you've never heard the harpsichord. Let's go down and I'll play something for you." That's always good for at least 15 minutes without talking because others will always join us and ask for additional music. And there's always, "Oh, let me introduce you to..."
5) We are fortunate that DD#1 is local to help us. Between our younger friends and hers we always have a fair number of BABIES and small children in the mix. Babies are the ultimate low-stress interaction. Hold a baby for 15 minutes and the parents are happy and you can just make faces at the kid and not converse with any other adults.
6) We have a large house relative to the number of guests that we invite so that there is always a room or the patio where we can duck out for a minute or two to catch our breath or converse with just a couple of people.

I can't stand going to other people's parties, but DW and I both have a good time at the one or two events we host each year. We're always exhausted the next day, but that's ok.

Any other introverts have successful party hosting strategies that they would like to share?
__________________

__________________
jjquantz is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 12-13-2015, 03:49 PM   #2
Moderator
Sarah in SC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 13,456
We used to throw a huge St Pats party every year, and there was always a point a couple of hours ahead when I just wished I could take off and disappear until the party was over. The planning was what I enjoyed the most, and I tend to dread the actual event itself.
I honestly don't miss throwing a party for 100 people, but we've had quite a few parties since then with some smaller numbers that went well.
Key for me is to have a good mix of random weird people who can entertain each other, and not rely on me to sit with them and talk. Bonus points for anyone legit crazy enough to sing karaoke, run naked in the yard, or jump in the fire. They tend to distract folks from my introvert tendencies.
No children, though, because frankly no one should consider it safe to hand most of my friends an actual baby for any length of time.
__________________

__________________
“One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching.”
Gerard Arthur Way

Sarah in SC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:19 PM   #3
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,824
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjquantz View Post
Any other introverts have successful party hosting strategies that they would like to share?
Introvert? Hosting parties?

Here's a great strategy: ~~~~>>
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:21 PM   #4
Full time employment: Posting here.
jjquantz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 846
I think that if DW could just plan and prepare the party and then hand it off to someone else she would be almost as happy. Our numbers have run from about 50 up to 100, closer to the low end since we've moved to the DC area. Nearly all of our friends are good conversationalists so we rarely feel trapped with anyone.

What we really dislike is the (one) person who shows up late after everyone else has left and we are already 90% through the initial cleanup. Last night she had the gall to say, "You need more friends who stay up late." No, what we need is to get to bed. Of course, this friend came to us by way of crazy BIL, so she would not have been one of our natural invitees. But DW is too nice to cut her off the list.
__________________
jjquantz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:22 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 1,317
jjquantz, Extroverts do the same things for a large party. Unless you use a caterer and hired help, you and spouse are the wait staff for the night. You greet the guests, pour the drinks, introduce people, set out the food, replace the food, put coats away and then get them out again and say good night. I've never had time to carry on a long conversation (let a lone play a musical instrument), even with close friends.
__________________
splitwdw is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:23 PM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
jjquantz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
Introvert? Hosting parties?

Here's a great strategy: ~~~~>>
I typically take 3 or 4 brief timeouts over the course of the evening. That's what the master bathroom is for.
__________________
jjquantz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:26 PM   #7
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,016
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjquantz View Post
Any other introverts have successful party hosting strategies that they would like to share?
I don't host parties! I do have friends over for supper or to host an activity, but six is about my limit. I especially do not feel comfortable inviting strangers into my home.
__________________
Meadbh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:30 PM   #8
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,824
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meadbh View Post
I don't host parties!
+1 Me either! That's just not in my comfort zone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjquantz View Post
I typically take 3 or 4 brief timeouts over the course of the evening. That's what the master bathroom is for.
The best time out lasts from before the party starts, to well after it ends. Why do you throw parties, anyway? As an introvert, I can't imagine that this is something that you especially relish doing or that is more pleasant than bamboo splinters under the fingernails. Don't allow yourself to be pushed into things you don't care for.

The last party I hosted was in 1960. My home is my castle, yes MY castle, nobody else's, and I am an introvert. I have enjoyed the past 55 years of not inviting groups of people to come to MY house and stress me out with things like not leaving at a reasonable hour. Amazingly, the people I care about don't care, because they understand me and like me the way I am.

If I ever invite large groups of people here then please have me committed to a psychiatric ward.

__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:45 PM   #9
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 11,614
Assuming there will be at least some introverts invited to the party, what can be done to make them most comfortable (or at "least uncomfortable")? As an introvert, what I like at a party:
-- A guest list with predominantly people I already know, or at least enough of them that I can fill the evening without the exhausting ritual of spending half the time making introductions/being introduced.
-- Having something to do. If there's something to focus on rather than >just< socializing, then it takes the pressure off. And, ultimately, I often meet more people as we engage in the project/task, and we automatically have something natural to talk about. A close friend always invites DW and I to her home for Thanksgiving, along with lots of her family. I'm so thankful that she lets me carve the turkey (though I do a marginal job) and lets me bus the dishes, etc.
-- A controversial suggestion: Put a TV on in an out of the way room. Often there are people attending primarily because they are the spouse of the "genuine" invitee. They know no one there, and might really prefer to watch sports. I wouldn't do it, but if I invite people to a party and that's what they want to do, I will be a good host and facilitate it.
-- If feasible, know enough about guests (especially the introverts) and their interests to make meaningful introductions. "When you told me at work that you like classic Japanese cars, I thought you'd like to meet Jim, he used to own a 240Z. Jim, Bill here was stationed in Japan and owned a Cosmo."
__________________
"Freedom begins when you tell Mrs. Grundy to go fly a kite." - R. Heinlein
samclem is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:53 PM   #10
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,824
Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem View Post
Assuming there will be at least some introverts invited to the party, what can be done to make them most comfortable (or at "least uncomfortable")?
Oooh! Oooh!! Pick me! I know! I know!!! (Waving my hand in the air like Horshack on Welcome Back Kotter)

What you can do to make them more comfortable, is to graciously accept their decline of the invitation, warmly and without judgment or pressure.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:55 PM   #11
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,016
Quote:
Originally Posted by W2R View Post
What you can do to make them more comfortable, is to graciously accept their decline of the invitation, warmly and without judgment or pressure.
+1000
__________________
Meadbh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 04:59 PM   #12
Moderator
rodi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: San Diego
Posts: 8,802
We host a big dinner party every Christmas Eve - about 15 people. We serve seven different fish dishes in the southern Italian/Sicilian tradition. The focus is on the food rather than me entertaining anyone. I'm usually so busy in the kitchen (with DH) that guests have to entertain themselves. The guest list is a mix of family and interesting people we've found along the way. No vegetarians or people who hate fish though... why waste the 7 fish dishes on someone who won't appreciate it. We can fit, max, 16 people at our table with custom extension... we serve it all family style.

The only reason I do it is because I love cooking and I love the idea of continuing a tradition that my husband's Italian Nonne used to do.

That's it for hosting/entertaining for me... other than that it's strictly family gatherings.
__________________
Retired June 2014. No longer an enginerd - now I'm just a nerd.
micro pensions 7%, rental income 18%
rodi is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 05:10 PM   #13
Full time employment: Posting here.
jjquantz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by samclem View Post
Assuming there will be at least some introverts invited to the party, what can be done to make them most comfortable (or at "least uncomfortable")? As an introvert, what I like at a party:
-- A guest list with predominantly people I already know, or at least enough of them that I can fill the evening without the exhausting ritual of spending half the time making introductions/being introduced.

Yes, we generally have a guest list which is structured around 3 or 4 distinct groups of people who know each other.


-- Having something to do. If there's something to focus on rather than >just< socializing, then it takes the pressure off. And, ultimately, I often meet more people as we engage in the project/task, and we automatically have something natural to talk about. A close friend always invites DW and I to her home for Thanksgiving, along with lots of her family. I'm so thankful that she lets me carve the turkey (though I do a marginal job) and lets me bus the dishes, etc.

Several of our invitees are musicians. We will often "demonstrate" our musical instruments to the group. It's really just an excuse for us to jam and not have to talk.

-- A controversial suggestion: Put a TV on in an out of the way room. Often there are people attending primarily because they are the spouse of the "genuine" invitee. They know no one there, and might really prefer to watch sports. I wouldn't do it, but if I invite people to a party and that's what they want to do, I will be a good host and facilitate it.

Always have the TV on in the back room with a "kids movie". Last night it was Star Wars, Episode 4. SIL#1 (a solid introvert) spent some time back there.

-- If feasible, know enough about guests (especially the introverts) and their interests to make meaningful introductions. "When you told me at work that you like classic Japanese cars, I thought you'd like to meet Jim, he used to own a 240Z. Jim, Bill here was stationed in Japan and owned a Cosmo."

I'm not so good at this, but DW does a great job.
We also have a large enough house that most of the congregating occurs in one room, but small groups trickle onto the patio or into the music room. This allows introverts to get away from the crowd. Last night I probably spent less than 10 minutes in the main gathering area.

I realize that for some of you the idea of hosting a party is anathema, but DW and I, despite being pretty darned introverted, do feel a need to do something for our friends once each year. I still maintain that it is MUCH easier for me to HOST a party than to ATTEND someone else's. I am so thankful that my daughters are going to be around for New Year's Eve. They provided me with the needed excuse to turn down a golf buddy's invite to his NYE party. We went for 2 hours a couple of years ago and THAT was torture.
__________________
jjquantz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 05:13 PM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
jjquantz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Northern Virginia
Posts: 846
Quote:
Originally Posted by rodi View Post
We host a big dinner party every Christmas Eve - about 15 people. We serve seven different fish dishes in the southern Italian/Sicilian tradition. The focus is on the food rather than me entertaining anyone. I'm usually so busy in the kitchen (with DH) that guests have to entertain themselves. The guest list is a mix of family and interesting people we've found along the way. No vegetarians or people who hate fish though... why waste the 7 fish dishes on someone who won't appreciate it. We can fit, max, 16 people at our table with custom extension... we serve it all family style.

The only reason I do it is because I love cooking and I love the idea of continuing a tradition that my husband's Italian Nonne used to do.

That's it for hosting/entertaining for me... other than that it's strictly family gatherings.
DW LOVES to cook - the party gives her one big cooking blowout each year. We She spends weeks planning the menu and we begin cooking and freezing items in October. There is something rewarding about cooking for others that she just doesn't get cooking for the 2 of us.
__________________
jjquantz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 05:15 PM   #15
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Dash man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Limerick
Posts: 1,668
Party?? Never!!!!


Sent from my iPhone using Early Retirement Forum
__________________
Dash man is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 05:21 PM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Florence, AL/Helen, GA
Posts: 2,086
We only throw picnics at our lake house--fish fries--in early or late Summer.

After moving 300 miles and downsizing houses, our home is not configured to handle masses.

And after retiring, we don't do anything we don't want to do. And we don't choose to throw parties any longer.
__________________
Bamaman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 05:47 PM   #17
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
braumeister's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Northern Kentucky
Posts: 8,584
Luckily, DW and I are agreed that six people is our limit, and that includes us.
__________________
Pas de lieu Rhône que nous.
braumeister is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 05:59 PM   #18
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,498
Party? We don't host no stiinkin' parties.

Really, the last time we did that was ~25 years ago. It was exhausting for both of us. We can go to a party and we'll be generous with whatever wine/food we bring, but host one? No.

Fortunately DW's sister & hubby are extroverts and love to host the parties. This year we're bringing the Honeybaked ham for the Christmas dinner. Yum.
__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 06:07 PM   #19
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Albuquerque
Posts: 494
I enjoy small gatherings but am just terrible at parties. I'm an introvert and must be the most boring person in the world because I cannot mingle or keep a conversation going. It's like being the unpopular girl at school all over again.

Our neighborhood association started a once a month cocktail party where a different neighbor hosts each time. I wanted desperately to go because we have some very nice houses in our area and I like to look at house décor. Went to one and it was a dismal failure. My neighbor hosted another one so I went to it which was a little better but not much. At least if you are the host, it is your house and you can keep busy with all the host duties. We attendees have to fend for ourselves.

Rodi, I'm not a big fan of fish except for shellfish but I would love to go to a Feast of the Seven Fishes. Sounds great!
__________________
ABQ2015 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-13-2015, 08:54 PM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern IL
Posts: 18,260
Fifty to 100 guests? Wow, that's a big group - are you sure you are an introvert? We haven't done that since BK (before Kids), outside of maybe a wedding/baby shower or something. Hmmm, OK, we hosted DW's work holiday party a few years back, but people bring stuff, as you are expected mostly to just provide the space and some basics.

It does help to have a large space, so people can break into groups. Like others have said, with that many people, you are doing a lot of checking up on everything - the next day I hardly recall talking to anyone, I was so busy.

So like boats, a vacation house, and several other luxuries, it's almost always better to have friends who have that stuff, and accept the occasional invite (and be generous in return, to hopefully get invited back!).

-ERD50
__________________

__________________
ERD50 is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
You Know You're an Introvert When ... easysurfer Other topics 24 02-02-2015 11:08 AM
Retiring Introvert - Ideas on Making Friends Miramar Hi, I am... 28 01-30-2014 10:27 AM
Poll:Are you an Introvert or an Extrovert Keim FIRE and Money 127 08-25-2013 10:32 AM
As an introvert, this scares me. Ally Other topics 23 03-08-2012 11:32 AM
Web Hosting Company - Recommendations lowflyer Other topics 4 01-15-2007 05:59 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:14 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.