Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Another May Party


My mind recently flashed back to a legendary party of long ago. This reminder was prompted by a question from my good friend, who is turning out to be an excellent party planner. She asked me to describe the perfect party and instantly May 5, 1973, came to mind.
I lived in a group house with 4 other women, one guy, and assorted random other people from time to time in a wealthy part of DC. We were all in our mid-20's. We were all somewhat poor, working on starting salaries (mine was $9,300 a year). But we never worried about money and a high priority was eating, drinking, and having a good time.
At that time Nard's (run by a guy named Nardello) was a DJ company specializing in oldies that regularly played in places like Whitby's and Hawk and Dove. We hired Nard's for our party and our back yard became the dance floor.
We carefully canvassed the neighborhood ahead of time, asking these upper class people to call us before they called the cops. Among these neighbors were Art Buchwald and Congressman Jim Symington. We as renters were a definite novelty in Wesley Heights. They all smiled and agreed, probably remembering such parties at an earlier era in their lives.
I never remember thinking about the possibility of rain. How could anyone dare rain on our party? And of course the weather was perfect.
I don't remember food as a high priority. I'm sure there were enormous quantities of chips and other junk food and I do remember making my mother's onion dip. There was no shortage of things to drink, most on the alcoholic side.
David came to the party with his hair hanging down to his shoulders. At that point, he was just another work friend. I think he brought the bottle of gin that rendered him the drunkest I have ever seen him.
But meanwhile we danced to the music of Nard's, making our requests for those songs we held so dear. And we danced for hours, taking up money to extend their contract. That's when I first realized just how much David loved Higher and Higher by Jackie Wilson. (Maybe that's our song, Aileen.)
At one point a DC cop did show up. My very capable roommate Dick invited him in, steering him clear of the room where a lot of "smoking" was going on. He was only too happy to have a drink and leave us alone.
David's "higher and higher" finally crashed around 2:00 AM and I realized that he was in no shape to drive home. So our first night together was not one of ecstacy, but rather a drunken stupor as we collapsed together into my single bed. I suppose it was intimacy by definition of space. As we nursed our hangovers the next morning over glasses of orange juice and I popped by BC pill out of habit, I could see the light bulb going off in his head. Ohhh...
After a long description of the May 5 party and my desire to recreate the same atmosphere, my party planning friend said to me, "Let's see. You were 24 years old, right? Do you think anyone at your retirement party will want to dance?" Now there's a jolt back to reality. Maybe not.
If Steve were here, he would dance, but it's hard for me to picture some of my other guests on the dance floor. Maybe I should invest heavily in gin. But not for David, who turns green at the thought of drinking gin after that night.
We'll see. Do you think 50-something's would dance? Oldies? Ballroom? Swing? What type of music?

9 Comments:

Blogger steve said...

OK.. heres what you do now..
"you put the Lime in the Coconut
drink the bowl up
Lime in de coconut
Call me in the morning
Lime in da Coconut
Such a silly woman
I said
"David
is there a way to link us up?
David
Plug the camera to the Monitor
And I'll be there for the Party"

OK, I'm gettin' a little carried away, but maybe with some high tech shenanigans I can Rock the Bunny Hop with ya'll.
People over 50 not Dancin'? Who are these people? I'll show them 'The Geritol Shuffle" and we can turn up their pacemakers!
Great story, you and David. You should get an Academy Award for that BC stunt! lol

2:56 PM  
Blogger Pauline said...

Errmmm...I'm over 60 (just!) and I dance! Make it available and let them choose to dance or not to dance...now, where's that lime and coconut?

5:14 PM  
Blogger Richard said...

The idea is for you to have fun (responsibly), not to worry about what is "appropriate".

Sofia would say, let there be music and dance. If that is what you want, then go for it.

5:28 PM  
Blogger Aileen said...

Yes- this party needs to be all about you! So if dancing is what you desire..dancing is what you should have! (And I think you'll be surprised how many join you :)

Type of music? I think between you and David you could come up with a great selection. I imagine a mix of selections from the various decades!

7:09 PM  
Blogger Jamy said...

My mom is in her late 60's and she would dance--swing, the twist--whatever! I'd dance too. :)

7:15 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

"It's your party and you can dance if you want to...I would dance too but it's up to you!"

Oldies for sure! (late 50's - 70's)

10:57 PM  
Anonymous David said...

Must have been rum. I always thought gin tasted like Vitalis hair tonic (anyone remember Vitalis?).

I remember the May 5 party quite well. I recall sitting on the stairs and insulting the red head. Lucky she didn't hit me. She could have done some real damage. I also recall paying for an extra hour of Nards and then being too drunk to enjoy it, shortly before you so kindly put me to bed.

Oldies for the oldies :-) sounds good.

12:18 AM  
Blogger avocadoinparadise said...

If they're anything like the older folks in my family, Dance they Will! To Oldies! :)

I love that so many folks from the 60s and 70s still get down.

12:17 PM  
Blogger Old Lady said...

Well now missy, Steve and I will be there, with our boots on and will dance our boodies to anything that you put on. We are preparing the Holograph Machine NOW!

They all better dance! Feets don't fail me now!

12:28 PM  

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