It’s finally happened…grannidom has hit and it’s hit hard.
This weekend I went out on Saturday night to not one but two parties…I know, I know…I’m clearly a rock star. It was my first ‘night out’ in 2 months (first sign of grannidom). The first party was my house mate’s friend’s birthday party at a bar. That was fine. Nice in fact. My house mate, her friend and I got there at 10 pm. The music playing at the bar was very good in my opinion. However as it was still fairly empty, no one wanted to get up and be the first person to dance, although I would’ve happily been this person had I been with more lively company. The birthday girl arrived fashionably late (11.20 pm) and opened her presents and made a speech. It was a really nice atmosphere and I was enjoying myself as I’d co-incidentally run into a couple of my friends there, but by about 11.45 I was ready to go home. In fact I’d periodically been letting out a few yawns throughout the night (more evidence of my grannidom) so I’d been ready to go home for a while.
At 12.30 am my house mate (who was driving) decided we should make our way to the second party, her DJ friend’s shindig at a hotel. Now as my house mate works in the music industry and as I was informed it was an exclusive event, I thought the party would be my chance to rub shoulders with a few music stars (sad I know). I thought it’d have to be a good party as it was being put on by a DJ so surely they’d have good music playing.
We arrived at the hotel at 1.10 am and were told by a friend of my house mate’s who was leaving, that the party finishes at 2 am. “We’ve got 50 minutes to party guys” my house mate proclaimed enthusiastically. At this point, although I was exhausted and would have much rather been at home fast asleep, I was still optimistic that this soiree would be all glitz and glam and thus well worth my tiredness. Particularly since the hotel itself was rather luxurious.
The party was in the basement room in the hotel. We descended the stairs after being checked off the guest list (again more evidence of the event’s exclusivity) and entered a dark and very packed room full of booming music. It was the sort of music where the base is so loud it makes you feel a bit sick because you can literally feel the vibrations throughout your entire body and I was pretty sober I was very aware of this unpleasant sensation. Clearly, the obvious solution was to get a drink. We all looked like we needed one. We headed over to the bar and of course were met with the joyous bar crowd you encounter at most venues where it may take anything between 5-20 minutes to get a drink. Luckily it only took 10.
Drinks in hand, we headed over to a spot on the dance floor where my house mate spotted a couple of her friends. Now at this point the DJ had just finished playing his set of old-school UK garage music and had now moved on to bashment music (both genres I’m not a massive fan of, bashment even less so than garage). Right, so we’ve established that the music wasn’t great. Next let’s discuss the clientele.
What my house mate had neglected to tell me was that this DJ friend was clearly of an older generation. He was not young or hip or cool hence the music was not hip or cool or even good. In fact I can’t be certain that I wasn’t at Tim Westwood’s party judging by the crowd and the music. (FYI I am not a Tim Westwood fan).
At 2.15 am (actually 1.15 am as the clocks had just gone back an hour) my house mate informed us that we were leaving. At this point I don’t really know if I cared all that much. I’d already been groped twice, compared to Kim Kardashian and had a drink spilt on me. I was pretty indifferent now as I’d come to terms that the whole night had been a bit of a bust in my opinion. On the car journey home we decided to stop for a burger and to be honest, this was the first bit of good news of the whole evening. Particularly since this specific late night burger joint was of an especially good quality.
So here’s what I’ve taken away from the experience. As this was my first outing in 2 months and my first sober outing in a long while I have realised that I really don’t enjoy ‘parties’ or ‘nightclubs’ or ‘raves’. I haven’t done in a very long time in fact. Although alcohol may help in temporarily dulling my senses to the obvious awfulness of such events, I have come to the conclusion that excessive alcohol consumption simply isn’t worth the hangover. Hence my decision of sobriety on Saturday.
In recent months I have much preferred accompanying friends to dinner, the theatre and the occasional bar for a quick drink or 2 but I honestly fail to see the appeal of nightclubs any more. It may also be to do with the fact that most clubs play music that is in the pop charts and the majority of music from the charts is just dreadful. It may also be that I don’t enjoy large crowds and sweat boxes but lastly and most importantly, my lack of enjoyment at such events aside from the over priced drinks, painfully bad music and overcrowding is the men! The creepy men who leer and ogle for a prolonged period of time. The men who for some reason think that because they are in a night club the usual rules of social etiquette don’t apply. The men who will come and stand ridiculously close to you whilst you’re dancing, oblivious to your personal space requirements. Surely I can’t be the only woman who finds this experience incredibly awkward and uncomfortable. Perhaps it’s the sobriety that makes their leering a lot more noticeable. Perhaps as I’m not a 17 year old girl desperately craving attention from the opposite sex I no longer find the idea of men staring at me appealing. Or perhaps men really do think only ‘certain’ types of women go to night clubs and thus this gives them a free pass to act inappropriately around females. Who knows. What I do know is that last Saturday reminded me exactly why it is that I stay in most weekends. It reminded me that there is nothing wrong with being home before 1 am. It reminded me that I will almost always choose an art gallery or a play or discovering a new restaurant or bar over a night out. And whilst many of you reading this may think oh god well doesn’t she sound too sensible or uptight or prudish, I am hoping that a few of you or even just one of you will be able to relate and will understand that there comes a point where you simply out grow certain things.