We’ve all been there: you’ve invited some colleagues over for dinner. How are you going to make sure the evening goes smoothly? Well, here’s a handy guide to being a gracious host and a recipe for a memorable and intriguing dish. Key notes highlighted and underlined for ease of reference.
Right, so you’ve invited your friends over for a dinner party. Great. You won’t regret that later or for months or for the rest of your life. It’s going to be fine so shut up. You need to prepare. This comes in two stages.
First prepare food-wise. Buy in some chicken breast, onions, garlic, a tin of beans (you will need this, in fact get two) and make sure you have your phone handy.
Secondly, prepare psychologically. Gary’s going to be there and you secretly like him but he must never know. So everything hinges on tonight. Tracey is also coming. You think she might be a better chef than you. She has nicer hair and you actually hate her. So you need wine. Maybe one bottle, for every two hours you intend to be in her company. Make that six bottles.
Now, let the cooking commence.
First step: open the first wine bottle. Every cook needs a little steadying. You will cook badly if you don’t start with the correct preparation.
Secondly, oh god yeah, you forgot, tidy the house a bit. You live on your own don’t you, so it’s obviously an atrocity in there. I mean, don’t vacuum or anything mad like that, just move stuff to the sides of the rooms so there’s floor space and wipe a cloth around the obvious surfaces. Handy tip: point your furniture away from the television so it doesn’t look like your home life is centred around Netflix. You’re not futile and pathetic! Also flush the loo. Put out the fancy soaps. Pretend that you’re not living like a student anymore.
Thirdly, back to that kitchen. Peel, half and then dice your onion. Fry in a little sunflower oil until translucent. Stir it with one hand and apply wine with the other into your mouth. Ambidextrous cooking is a skill that makes you look like you cook. You’re probably crying, that’s possibly just the onion (you should tell everyone this for the rest of the night or you’ll spoil the dinner party).
Thirdly, another glass. Cook heavily and intensely. Intensity of cooking brings intensity of dinner party. Throw herbs into it, there’s probably some in the cupboard.
Then put the chicken on a plate to, defrost or, whatever. Does it need to stand? Is that a thing? Soon your first guest will arrive because it’s like half seven now – SHIT it’s already quarter past eight, quick get the chicken in the pan quick
Sixly – Sixthly? – open the second bottle, it adds flavour to, the evening
Fuck fuck fuck one of them’s outside. Peer through the curtains. It’s Gary. Ergh. You’re not ready yet but let him in, tell him to wipe his feet (men like being told what to do and this domestic touch will probably, something). And don’t let him see the empty bottles you were going to take out earlier, you should have put candles in them to make tasteful table top decorations (did I not mention that) then sit him down, give him a glass of wine, tell him to calm the fuck down sit down Gary for Christ’s sake
Tenfold, put the water on the pasta and let it, you know. It’ll do it.
Stir things, seventhly, in the order specified above. Everything’s in hand. Have another drink.
Tell Gary to shut up it’s a party. He should be enjoying himself, what’s even wrong with him
Have another glass, steady yourself. Gary won’t like the party if the cooking hasn’t happened properly.
Tracey is better at this than you.
Tracey’s outside. Speak of the fucking she-devil bitch. Lean out the window and tell her to wait outside. Say there’s no room and you’re not ready yet so she can just wait outside can’t she.
Tell Gary not to let her in, she’s a skank.
Tenth, if Tracey gets up herself (she’s such a bitch) throw one of the tins of beans out of the window, near her or at her car windscreen.
Sit on the stairs for a bit.
Ask Gary to take the stuff off the thing before it sets the fire alarm off again.
Sing Gary your favourite song, you know, the one that goes “I really really like the, morning light, baby hold me close until the morning light, it will be alright” and wave your arms a bit
Ask Gary to mop up the wine you just spilt dancing on the stairs
Fifthly try to stop Gary leaving by telling him you’ll be sick in your sleep and DIE if he goes back with that bitch and tell him that anyway the rice will be done soon
Sit on the stairs for a bit in your empty house
Open the remaining beans and, apply. Alternatively use that phone to order something in, maybe a food. Cook again from the glass.
(Oh, for all of the above replace “cook” with “drink,” that is probably better semantically)
Well done, you hosted your tenthly dinner party. Post some pictures on Instagram of the – what did you cook again – yeah, and tell everyone how amazing your night was without certain people who will go without mentioning Tracey.
Bon appetite. Please share with friends and everyone except Tracey. Now treat yourself to a good, long sit on the stairs until Saturday morning.