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The Soiree in Shifts


While still living in that basement in which I could fit about eight people, I wanted to throw a Christmas party for about 50. Using the rule of thumb that one-quarter of invitees will decline outright, I calculated that I would actually need space for about 42 people. No problem: I invited everyone...just not all for the same time. Twelve (or maybe 13) invitations said 4 to 6 o'clock, implying a teatime kind of thing; nobody who showed up complained when offered cocktails. Twelve invitations said 5 to 7, 12 said 6 to 8, and so on. This way the place never got too crowded. Fresh blood was guaranteed to flow in once an hour. Yes, some people overstayed and overlapped, but only because they really wanted to...and there's always room for that.

Next: Back-to-Back Dinner Parties

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