Festivus Vlog: The Aftermath

On Saturday, I held my eighth annual Festivus party, this one with a trashy/classy theme. Although my mullet never really filled in to the point of being recognizable, I dressed half and half for the theme.

I went into this party with the mentality that it might be the last big Festivus party I hold. I’m 30 now, and thus all of my friends are around my age too. Many have gotten married and some have kids. We’re already well past the turning point when we stop attending big house parties and going out to bars and clubs, instead opting for quieter dinner parties and game nights.

For the most part, I greatly prefer the smaller, more focused, low-key evenings. But once a year, I love playing host to a big party. Just in case this was going to be the last year I host Festivus, I decided to really go all out this year. I figured it would either spark a resurgence with a new generation of attendees, or I’d go out with a bang.

Objectively, the party was a huge success. People really embraced the theme, and they seemed to appreciate the Seinfeld-themed food I provided (96 homemade black-and-white cookies and 150 bite-sized Gus’ Pretzels) by eating almost all of it. They drank all of the giant beers I kept in a cooler at the entrance to my condo (what’s the first thing you do when you get to a party? You grab a drink.)

I also hired a bartender, a surprisingly easy and cost-effective choice thanks to craigslist. The concept of the bartender was a big hit–she made a ridiculous number of drinks, including at least 175 Seinfeld-themed shots (basedon the number of disposable shot glasses I provided).

The party was attended by somewhere between 60 and 80 people–there was a good 3 hours when ever room was packed with people. I loved that, and I’m so thankful that people came out despite the rain. Weather is never nice on Festivus. I invited everyone in my building and was pleased that some of them actually showed up.

Dave and Trevor had some of the most thematic costumes at the party.

I probably spent as much time preparing for Festivus this past week as I spent on my full-time job. I intended to take a video either before or during the event, but I was way too busy trying to talk to everyone there. So at 2:30 am, after the last guests had left, I found myself with a very empty apartment and a Flip video camera.

If you watch the video below, you’ll see some things that I failed to talk about in the video, such as the feat of strength (Beer Four Square, a beer pong/four square hybrid that I invented a few years ago), the Festivus pole (in the corner in the VIP room), the VIP puppy that a friend provided, and the fact that Biddy spent most of the party surprising people by emerging from the bathroom cabinet when they were on the toilet.

My Festivus grievance selection committee is currently sorting and ranking the top 40 grievances, which I’ll post in groups of 10 starting tomorrow.


12 thoughts on “Festivus Vlog: The Aftermath”

  1. Congratulations on the success of your party. Those were some sweet costumes. I’m saddened by your point about turning 30 and thus being forcibly retired from the big-bash-throwing game. I’m in the same boat. I used to throw a huge Halloween Party and realized at the last one that mostly strangers were showing up, making it decidedly un-fun. Anyway, why do you have those giant white boards? Is that just for Festivus or are they up all the time??

    • Yeah, parties really do evolve and change when you get old. I actually like having some strangers show up so I can meet new people on my turf, but if they became the majority, that would be a problem.

      Here’s the story behind the whiteboards (basically, one is up all the time, and the other I borrowed): https://jameystegmaier.com/2011/01/leadership-tactic-42-whiteyboard/

      Also, could you use your name (even just a first name) on your comments? I understand that you want to keep your e-mail private, but I try to encourage conversation on the blog, and provides a sense of realness if people use real names.

      • Yeah, I liked meeting strangers too, but it really bothered me when they were rude to me in my own home (because they didn’t know who was throwing the party). Oh well, I guess I’ll have to stick to dinner parties and game nights from now on. Wow, that’s kind of depressing.

        Whoa, that Whiteyboard thing is pretty cool. I’m definitely buying one. Framed white boards are ridiculously expensive!

        • That’s really unfortunate that they were rude to you, regardless of whether or not you were the host. There’s nothing wrong with dinner parties and game nights, though! 🙂

          I really love my whiteyboard. It didn’t stick to my textured walls as well as I thought it would, but I don’t mind having the blue tape as a frame. If you have room, bigger is better–it’s fantastic for brainstorming.

      • Yeah, I thought it was a great festivus. But at the end, when in the course of 15 seconds 22 yr old drink neighbor chick slapped and then kissed me, then physically jumped on a CLEARLY uncomfrotable Tracy, I thought the same thing about party evolution. In college, that would have been stellar. At 30, that is unacceptable – from a stranger.

  2. Oh man! That was the last Festivus party?!? Why didn’t you tell me that? I may have driven 10 hours from Michigan (hungover) to make it!

    • That MIGHT be the last Festivus, Neeraja, but not necessarily. You get to participate from afar by ranking some of the grievances, so you were here in spirit. 🙂

  3. Oh, I feel bad leaving you with all that mess and no bed to sleep on after many delicious shots. It was a great party. And if it is the last one. I’m glad I got invited and made it! Hope Biddy was still around after the party.

    • Oh, no problem at all! It wasn’t hard to put my bed back together. Biddy wasn’t helpful with that, but he was extra snuggly that night.


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