I have officially survived twenty-five New Year’s Eves of enough varieties that I think I’ve finally found the perfect equation to achieve a perfect NYE party. So long as your plans don’t break these simple rules, you are sure to have a great time.
Anyway, back to the perfect NYE party.
Everyone knows what to expect for New Year’s: at its core, it is champagne and a midnight kiss. Drinking and making out. If you don't know that, then you are a child.
The point of New Years is to relish the final moments of whatever the passing year is. So obviously I feel like I’ve partied for nothing if there isn’t an official countdown that everyone can agree to. I’ve been to parties where someone is like, “Okay, we’re getting really close to midnight, and—oh, wait, we missed it. Happy New Year!” and everyone cheers because they’re obligated to, but inside everyone is fucking pissed that they got drunk, and dressed up, and stressed out in the search for one other person as desperate as they were to mush their faces on when the clock struck, only to miss the entire purpose of the evening.
Also, staying sober enough to remember the New Year’s countdown is a treat. Give it a go. (I’m talking to myself, now.)
I cannot stress this enough: IF YOU DO NOT PROVIDE AMPLE PEE-SPACE, I WILL GET CREATIVE AND INVENT MY OWN. I hope you don’t treasure your house plants, or your fish tank, or your upwards-opening drier. I hope that your cat doesn’t mind sharing the litter box. I hope you notice my pee-corner before you try to get your deposit back on this room you rented out. I hope that I didn’t ruin your show while also ruining the dance floor.
“Oh, Johanna, that’s just you, because you’re a fucking animal who is not invited to anymore of my parties.”
I promise you it is not. I am a girl, so I have to pee strategically. And often. Boys can sneak pee anywhere they want, and they will do so because of how easy it is for them to do so. If you can write your name in the snow with your pee without drawing attention to yourself, then you can pee anywhere. If you think that a man has never used his superior pee-privilege to mark part of your party/event as his territory, then you are a child.
“Still, you owe me a new bonsai tree.”
I did you a favor. That thing looked hideous. Totally threw off the flow of the entire room.
While the college-age person living inside you may be whispering little chants of this will be the party of the century and everyone must come!! you would do well to ignore it. You are a grown-ass adult, not a star in the movie Superbad. You are not a child, stop acting like one.
Don’t believe me? Here’s a scenario: think about the most crowded night at the bar, when everyone is fighting for the bartender’s attention just to get a refill on your shitty PBR that they for some reason have on draft because you drink at shitty bars. Isn’t it the worst? All of the bodies mashing into each other in the least sexy and most uncomfortable ways imaginable? If you’re a lady, you have to be on constant vigilance that the accidental ass swipes you inevitably receive are actually accidental; if you’re a man who isn’t keen on sexual assault, you have to be constantly apologizing because there is no fucking way you’re getting out of that riot without accidentally elbow grazing some poor girl’s cans.**
Now think about that, only everyone is aggressively hyped-up on their holiday high and the prices are doubled. No. Fucking. Thank you.
Maybe I’ve just outgrown that scene (Jesus, finally) but, to the children out there, it really isn’t worth the struggle. Big shot events take a lot to handle, and handling things is not something that drunk people are particularly great at, especially when they are many in number. The most fun I’ve had was at a party that was semi-exclusive, with invites handed out to friends and friends of friends instead of advertised for weeks in advance. The volume is loud but not deafening, you can probably trust that the apology for brushing his wiener on your hip in passing is legit, and you don’t have to wait eight hundred god damn light-years just to get a drink.
So get in touch with that family friend-of-a-friend who has a big house and a big heart and snag an invite. You’ll probably drink for free. Drinking for free…does anyone else hear a choir of angels singing?
Seriously, you’re making everyone uncomfortable. Where are your parents? Shouldn’t you be in bed? If you should, then know that everyone is judging your parents right now. If you’re old enough to stay awake for when the ball drops (say, because your balls have dropped?! Clutch.) then go find the kiddie table and awkwardly hug your friends of the gender that interests your growing genitals most, and leave the adults to awkwardly do the same with their mouths.
In other words, I thought that four rules weren’t enough, so I invented a problem for New Year's Eve parties to have. I hope it’s not obvious, though it should be now that I’ve said it. I was going to delete it this entire entry, but I just think it’s hilarious to imagine some kid standing by her parents at midnight and they’re like, “Go away, Tina, we’re trying to salvage our marriage with the blind naivety of the new year. Send Jimmy a high-five emoji, whatever it is you kids are doing these days before sex. Is there a before sex anymore? I saw a TV show called four-and-a-half and prengant, so who knows.”
…I think I’m still recovering from New Years. Good lord, this post is falling apart fast.
Seriously, find someone else to do it. Show them this list, but skip this last one. I’ve thrown some parties before, but I think NYE must be the worst. First of all, everyone was drinking champagne, so we went from twelve champagne glasses to eight, which also meant that there were four glasses worth of broken glass and spilled champagne to pick up. You could go for plastic champagne glasses, but they're so light that they spill hella easy so you’re still going to have a mess. And plastic shards can hurt, too. So skimping on the classiness is really just pointless.
Then what is it everyone throws at midnight? Confetti. You know what the worst god damn thing in the shitty stupid planet is to clean up? Confetti. Vacuum once a week and you’ll still find little bits of shiny plastic in the corner of your couch come Easter. And since confetti manages to get into every open space in your vicinity, it will most definitely get into someone’s drink, and someone will most definitely puke, so if those two end up being the same person then you’re going to have some very sparkly puke on your hands. Not literally, I hope.
Although nothing does take away the sting of beginning a new year with painful vomiting like seeing some sparkles in the toilet after you’re done. For a moment you feel like a drunken unicorn.
I want it put on record that I am not judging these dresses or the women who wear them. I bought two of them this season so I could have options on New Year's Eve. Two dresses, I mean. I didn't buy two women for the new year...seriously, am I still drunk from that night? What is my excuse right now? Jesus. Moving on.
Traditionally, NYE is just a final, desperate extension of the Christmas holiday, and a final release of the fist you’ve been clenching inside to restrain yourself around your family and convince them that you're not just another "lazy millennial" squandering your degree by drinking and whoring your way through your twenties. A Christmas party is to a NYE party as Ella Fitzgerald is to Ke$ha: one brings to a nostalgic mind classy, velvet dresses and romantic mistletoe, while the other floods your senses with tight glittery miniskirts and jamming your tongue into a stranger’s biggest facehole. You can go single to a Christmas party thinking, “Oh, maybe there will be a handsome stranger under the mistletoe,” because Christmas is full of miracles and you keep on shining, you stupid, crazy diamond. But if you go single to a NYE party the way NYE is advertised, then your thought process is probably more like, “All right, if this tiny fucking dress and these painful heels do not put a face against mine, then this entire year is going to be bullshit.” New Year’s Eve has the potential to be wild in a way that other holidays don’t** because it’s all about leaving the past behind and looking forward to a new, bright future. The time to be horrible, self-destructive manchildren is now, for the future begins tomorrow! Tonight, we slaughter the past with our ritualistic gyrations and shots that taste like paint thinner, for livers are a thing of decades we now leave behind!
** If you’re somewhere else on the fluid spectrum of human sexuality, then I cannot speak for you because I was raised in a society that relies on binaries and I am still in the process of familiarizing myself with the experiences of what lies around, within, and in-between the cisgendered population. But I’m guessing it sucks for you, too.
**See also graduation parties. Then revisit rule 4, because you’re too young so please don’t come to my friends’ parties.
The Drunken Unicorn that somehow isn't me: here