Molly Fisk: Counter-tops

It’s eight in the morning and tonight I’m throwing a party. I’m not throwing it alone, thank God, there are nine of us doing it, plus it’s a potluck. But it’s at my house, and therein lies the problem.

Who knew I was going to set my teaching materials down every week for a year on the credenza by the back door and never pick them up again? That I would pile bill receipts, copies of my latest poetry manuscript, and old birthday cards on top? Plus, there seems to be a half-full plastic bottle of 10-30 motor oil and here are my garden clippers — I’ve been wondering where those had disappeared to.

I’m tempted to drape a tablecloth over the whole disaster and pretend my cats are sleeping under there, not to be disturbed, but we badly need the credenza to put food and drinks on. This isn’t a big house — it works for parties because it has a big deck, but wouldn’t you know, it’s raining… We’re going to need every square inch of surface area inside.

I guess this means I’d better take the blue Mexican margarita glasses that are haphazardly wrapped and just sitting in a plastic bag by the door out to the garage. What do you suppose I should do with this pile of books that’s been sitting on the wood stove all summer? I’m going to need to make a fire if the rain keeps up — for its welcoming aspect as well as heat. But my bookshelves are overflowing already. Maybe they could be moved temporarily under the bed. Which means I should vacuum, to make sure there aren’t any wizened rodent body parts that have escaped my eagle eye. Yuck.

I used to throw an annual Christmas party, but it got too hard. Not the cleaning beforehand, but the way you never really get to talk to anyone at your own party. And how, since I’m single, I’d end up alone in the house afterward, surveying the mess and thinking that I’d just given all my friends a great time but hadn’t had enough fun myself to ever do it again. It’s also depressing to be alone after a party and not have anyone to talk it over with, review the best gossip, repeat funny stories.

I won’t be alone after this one. People are coming early to set up and staying after to clean up, so I’ll be able to gossip my heart out. Also, the guests aren’t my immediate circle of friends, I don’t even know half of them, so I won’t feel jealous that they’re all having a good time with each other while I work. I’m going to show my co-hosts where the serving spoons and recycling are, how to work the CD player, and then try not to be in charge of everything, so I get more time to hang out.

I’m also going to remind myself frequently why we’re having the party in the first place. It’s to appreciate all the women who work for a non-profit where I volunteer. So it’s about love and gratitude.

Two of the very, very few things worth cleaning the counter-tops for.

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  • Shirley Harrison October 28, 2017 at 5:26 pm

    Molly, Most people are so glad to be guests at a party that they don’t care about clutter or dust as long as they can get to the food and drinks. You are doing a really kind thing for them, and I think that they will remember you fondly for it.

    • Molly Fisk October 29, 2017 at 2:36 pm

      I never see any dust at other people’s houses, it’s true. All I’m thinking about is how much I like the person and is there anything non-alcoholic to drink! 😉

  • hillsmom October 28, 2017 at 11:17 am

    Just keep the lights low and party on. That’s my two cents. Somehow, I don’t think that’s your counter-top in the picture above…? This morning there was a small flock of Goldfinches, in their winter plumage, busily snacking on the seed from the autumn allium and daisies. Gussie, =^..^= was beside herself wanting to get at them. Cheers dear Molly, and thanks for the chuckles. Someone once wrote that a clean house denotes a misspent life…no worries here.

    • Molly Fisk October 29, 2017 at 2:34 pm

      none here neither! once a month the house is very clean, courtesy of a paid professional, and i enjoy it immensely. 😉