4. The Narcissist
Ah, The Narcissist, my favorite person to people watch during a party. These guys or girls use their appearance, apparel, money, etc. to get attention and in their mind they deserve all the attention. It doesn't matter what the party was for, whether it be a wedding reception, birthday, retirement, farewell, etc. a narcissist will find a way to make the event about them. You can tell one by how they talk. If the conversation is all about them, their new car, their latest conquest, you know you're talking to a narcissist. Girls often like to say that narcissists are usually men, but I beg to differ. There are plenty of female narcissists out there who believe that they deserve a king, which means that instead of acting like a queen they act like a princess. And now I'm going to get angry emails through my contact form! We should move on.
5. The Phoner
Surrounded by people, yet texting someone miles away. The Phoner is someone who goes through all the trouble to get ready and drive to the party...only to stare at their phone the whole time. Now, I get it. Sometimes you're not sure who to talk to, so you phone it. You Facebook, Tinder, check email, I've even seen people watching YouTube videos just to pass the time. People, put the phone down, you're with live human beings! And you know what, talking to them may seem scary, but let's be honest: most mid-singles are really decent people and while they may not become the love of your life, you may just make some new friends. Also, if you see a Phoner at a party, do the Christlike thing and try saying hi to them. It could be that they are shy or don't know anyone and you may just help them have a great time instead of "that party sucked".
6. The Creeper
Now, I'm not saying that all parties should have advertised age-ranges, but no one wants to be hit on by someone their mom's or dad's age. And The Creepers are not just much older than the average party attendees. No, Creepers are the (ok, admittedly often men) people who leer, stalk, or just plain creep you out at the party. You know, that person who makes you b-line for your friends' protective circle. I'm not sure if Creepers are part Narcissist, but they very often fail to realize just how creepy they are acting, nor do they see that creepiness is not as attractive as they seem to think it is.
7. The Shadows
The Shadows are the wall-flowers, the chair-sitters, the corner-huggers. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with it! Not everyone feels super comfortable in social situations like parties and no one of us can be on their A-Game all the time. Very often The Shadows are incredibly and amazing people, they may just feel shy or be having a rough day. If you have the confidence to put yourself at the center of the party, I challenge you to have the courage to invite The Shadows to join you! Introduce them to your friends and help them participate. "But I didn't come to this party to find a service project!" you may say. I'm sorry, did you check your Christianity at the door?
8. The Servers
The Servers are my favorite people at parties. They are the helpers, the doers, the behind-the-scenes cleaner-uppers. The reason I love Servers is that they are focused outward instead of inward. They go to a party and care for others more than they care for "what am I getting out of it?" They help others have a good time and therefore feel a warmth and peace and fulfillment that is really at a higher-level than the simple "I want attention!" perspective that so many bring to a party. When invited to a party instead of asking, "who else is going?" they ask, "what can I do to help?" They ask questions of others in genuine desire to learn about them. These are the people that you meet at a party and after five minutes think, "I want this person as a friend!"
9. The Socialites
Socialites are quite entertaining to watch, especially when they waltz into parties or get togethers with an air of assumed royalty. These guys and girls seem to believe that for some reason they operate at a higher level than the "common folks" around them. They work the crowd like a politician, including the requisite hand-shakes, head nods of acknowledgement and "how are you"s as they traverse the party. Socialites are serial daters as they love the attention and ego-boosts that being asked out or getting to ask out brings, but they also hesitate to "give up the (social) throne" by getting into a relationship and therefore leaving the adoring throngs behind.
10. The Host/Hostess
Let's be honest: planning, organizing and throwing a party can be a lot of work. Oftentimes the host or hostess is working all night long to make sure things are running smoothly and that everyone is having a good time. The party for you is work for them; a labor of (measured) love to be sure, but labor nonetheless. And with the way events are posted on social media now-days it doesn't take a tech genius to find out who these people are. So here's my challenge for each of you reading this: make it a goal to go up to the host/hostess of every party you attend and thank them for putting it on. Recognize the work they put into it and if you're really feeling grateful ask what you can do to help. You'd be surprised what a simple, "thank-you" can mean to an overwhelmed party planner. Oh, if they ask for a cash or food donation for the party, be an adult and actually bring it with you. Freeloaders only make the job of a host or hostess that much more financially sacrificial.
Sometimes I feel like Liam Neeson in The Grey when I'm getting ready for a mid-singles party...
On a serious note, we all want to have a good time so let's do our best to put the selfishness aside and help those around us have a good time. In the words of that great president, Abraham Lincoln, "Be excellent to each other...and party on, dudes!"