Etiquette Hell

Hostesses With The Mostest => Entertaining and Hospitality => Topic started by: QueenofAllThings on October 05, 2012, 03:12:52 PM

Title: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: QueenofAllThings on October 05, 2012, 03:12:52 PM
The King and I are having a cocktail party this weekend. Of the two American political parties, we generally vote for the Glitter Party candidate. Most of our friends vote for the Dazzle Party candidate. That's fine with us - live and let live, etc.

We have two issues.

1.  Everyone assumes that we vote Dazzle party, because we are surrounded by people that do. They tell jokes, converse, etc. with this assumption in their minds. Now, I am all for civil discourse, but when someone is saying something offensive, wrong, or silly because they assume you feel the same way ....

And 2.  How do we fend off heated political discussion?

I guess I am asking two (related ) questions. I don't want to let the incorrect assumption lie, but I also don't want to have the whole party devolve into a screaming match over politics.  This has been a heated race and people feel very strongly. Add Scotch to the mix, and, well - you get the idea.

Any ideas for good bean dip/ diversionary tactics?
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: hobish on October 05, 2012, 03:21:28 PM

I wish i knew. I will be watching this thread with interest. I was just talking about this with my sister last night. The best i could come up with is that some people just aren't gong to be invited over until ... well, probably Spring  :-\ but that doesn't help you any.

Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: audrey1962 on October 05, 2012, 03:33:17 PM
I do not disucss politics. Even if the conversation is about my candidate of choice I do not discuss politics. I either change the subject or leave the room. Fortunately, since you are hosting, you have ample reasons to leave the room (refresh app's, get drinks, restock ice, clean something up, etc.)
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: lowspark on October 05, 2012, 03:37:18 PM
"Do you mind if we don't discuss politics tonight? It has so completely dominated the news lately, I need a break!"
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: TurtleDove on October 05, 2012, 03:38:42 PM
Since you are hosting, and these are your friends, I would simply ask that everyone refrain from political discussion during the event.

I see lowspark beat me to it! :)
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: LazyDaisy on October 05, 2012, 03:39:37 PM
If you don't want to let an incorrect assumption lie, then state, "I disagree with you, but now is not the time nor place to discuss it further...can I get you some more bean dip?"

I also find that humor diffuses a lot. Any chance of just having an obvious but lighthearted sign at the door to the effect that the evening will be a political-free zone and all references to any political party, issue, or candidate will cost the offender $1.00 or more? Enforce it in a game-like atmosphere; maybe make "party-foul" cards in yellow and red. Ribbon off a section of the space say 2 x 2 feet wide (ie. purposefully small and uncomfortable) and make that the political "arena."

However, with rabid political activists, I've found that there isn't a bean dip recipe strong enough to shut them down -- just don't invite them.
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: TurtleDove on October 05, 2012, 03:42:00 PM
I also find that humor diffuses a lot. Any chance of just having an obvious but lighthearted sign at the door to the effect that the evening will be a political-free zone and all references to any political party, issue, or candidate will cost the offender $1.00 or more? Enforce it in a game-like atmosphere; maybe make "party-foul" cards in yellow and red. Ribbon off a section of the space say 2 x 2 feet wide (ie. purposefully small and uncomfortable) and make that the political "arena."

I love this!
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Thipu1 on October 05, 2012, 04:38:43 PM
I was thinking it would be a good idea to make the party a 'Political No-Man's Land' as well.  The idea of a humorous sign along the lines of, 'All political opinions to be checked here' posted over a boot tray or umbrella stand might do it. 

These things can get nasty.  The lighter touch you can give it, the better. 

I know it's only a cocktail party but, to drive home the message how about making a cheap punch with red and blue ice cubes?  You could also offer a party game of pin the tail on the donkey/elephant.  >:D 

Okay.  I'll go back to my cellar now. 





Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: AmethystAnne on October 05, 2012, 05:18:06 PM
Would it be a rude thing to fasten a sign on the outside of your front door with the words
"political talk" in the middle of a circle with a single diagonal slash mark (like a no parking sign)?



Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: QueenofAllThings on October 05, 2012, 05:32:42 PM
I love all those ideas!!!!

Unfortunately, I'm afraid there will be one or two boors guests that will sputter "I will not be stifled!" But I may put up the red circle/slash anyway.
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: AmethystAnne on October 05, 2012, 05:38:57 PM
RudeMe would have an air horn handy.   >:D

RealMe would not, but the thought of using it would keep me smiling the rest of the night   ;D
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: LeveeWoman on October 06, 2012, 09:35:10 AM
Slap your hand on your chest as you gasp and say, "There's an election this year?" Then laugh loudly as you turn away.
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Sharnita on October 06, 2012, 10:02:36 AM
Ask in a really intense voice "Yes, but are you Team Peeta or Team Gale?"
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Piratelvr1121 on October 06, 2012, 10:13:24 AM
Hey you know that baby shower game where everyone gets a safety pin and if you say the word baby, you lose your pin?  Adapt that for this party and if anyone utters anything related to the election, they lose their pin.  >:D

I don't like talking politics and as I told my friend, if I'm going to watch two guys argue over who should be in charge, I'll watch Jack and Barbossa argue over who should be captain of the Pearl.  My vote's Jack, it's his ship. Hector's chartman. ;)
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Sharnita on October 06, 2012, 10:14:16 AM
Hey you know that baby shower game where everyone gets a safety pin and if you say the word baby, you lose your pin?  Adapt that for this party and if anyone utters anything related to the election, they lose their pin.  >:D

I don't like talking politics and as I told my friend, if I'm going to watch two guys argue over who should be in charge, I'll watch Jack and Barbossa argue over who should be captain of the Pearl.  My vote's Jack, it's his ship. Hector's chartman. ;)

I really like this!
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Kaypeep on October 06, 2012, 10:20:32 AM
If you don't want to let an incorrect assumption lie, then state, "I disagree with you, but now is not the time nor place to discuss it further...can I get you some more bean dip?"

I also find that humor diffuses a lot. Any chance of just having an obvious but lighthearted sign at the door to the effect that the evening will be a political-free zone and all references to any political party, issue, or candidate will cost the offender $1.00 or more? Enforce it in a game-like atmosphere; maybe make "party-foul" cards in yellow and red. Ribbon off a section of the space say 2 x 2 feet wide (ie. purposefully small and uncomfortable) and make that the political "arena."

However, with rabid political activists, I've found that there isn't a bean dip recipe strong enough to shut them down -- just don't invite them.

I'm not sure this will work.  My friend did something similar.  He had a superbowl party but asked us not to curse because he didn't want his daughters to hear swear words.  He put out a bowl and said anyone who cursed had to put in a $1 per word for the kids college fund.  Well, we all took out our wallets and tossed in all of our cash and just cursed even more.  It was worth every penny!  (Friend LOL'ed and kept the money, too!  He's very honest so I bet it's still in the kid's piggy banks, too.)
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: buvezdevin on October 06, 2012, 12:45:47 PM
I love all those ideas!!!!

Unfortunately, I'm afraid there will be one or two boors guests that will sputter "I will not be stifled!" But I may put up the red circle/slash anyway.

You might want to make that a "purple" circle - not red, not blue, includes both those colors without needing to declare for either...

Please update after the party, which I hope goes smoothly and is enjoyed by all!
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: QueenofAllThings on October 06, 2012, 06:23:58 PM
I really wish there was a 'like' button - these are all great responses!
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: LazyDaisy on October 09, 2012, 12:04:31 PM
If you don't want to let an incorrect assumption lie, then state, "I disagree with you, but now is not the time nor place to discuss it further...can I get you some more bean dip?"

I also find that humor diffuses a lot. Any chance of just having an obvious but lighthearted sign at the door to the effect that the evening will be a political-free zone and all references to any political party, issue, or candidate will cost the offender $1.00 or more? Enforce it in a game-like atmosphere; maybe make "party-foul" cards in yellow and red. Ribbon off a section of the space say 2 x 2 feet wide (ie. purposefully small and uncomfortable) and make that the political "arena."

However, with rabid political activists, I've found that there isn't a bean dip recipe strong enough to shut them down -- just don't invite them.

I'm not sure this will work.  My friend did something similar.  He had a superbowl party but asked us not to curse because he didn't want his daughters to hear swear words.  He put out a bowl and said anyone who cursed had to put in a $1 per word for the kids college fund.  Well, we all took out our wallets and tossed in all of our cash and just cursed even more.  It was worth every penny!  (Friend LOL'ed and kept the money, too!  He's very honest so I bet it's still in the kid's piggy banks, too.)
You're right, issuing a $1.00 fine could backfire and encourage them to do it more if they have the cash on them. They may get the idea that they've purchased the right to speak about politics.

I have another idea inspired by camp as a kid. If we got caught eating with our elbows on the table (or other dining etiquette infraction), we'd be called out to stand and sing a song to the dining room. Hmm, how about they have to sing the first verse of the Star Spangled Banner a cappella? For most people it's mildly embarrassing, stops them from speaking ('cause they're busy singing) and is non-partisan...on second thought, that could go wrong too if someone actually loves to sing. Plus it could unnecessarily punish the whole room, but could lead to increased group peer pressure to cease the political talk.

I don't know. Everything I can think of has a flip side that could go wrong. If guests don't listen to the host's polite request, there really isn't anything you can do to make them stop except ask them to leave; but for most social groups, that's a nuclear option that could end relationships.
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Donovan on October 09, 2012, 12:33:24 PM
I don't talk politics with anyone other than my husband. 

And although it is hard to hear people give out false info about my possible candidate, I do not correct them or try to give out the correct information. I have realized that it doesn't matter what you say, their mind is already made up. So why get into an argument about it as it will just lead to a longer discussion about politics which is exactly where I don't want to be.

I usually leave the area with some sort of excuse. It just isn't worth it to me.
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Tabby Uprising on October 09, 2012, 01:15:32 PM
I also live in an area where my political beliefs are more of a minority opinion and the majority of my friends identify with the majority opinion.  I've certainly been in positions where friends have assumed I'm a member of the majority.  Fortunately, my friends are well, my friends and they all have a good sense of humor. Because of that, when statements are made about people of the Glitter party, I usually respond with humor and say something like, "Hey, you know I'm a card-carrying member of the Glitter party!  Can't you tell by my radiant sparkle?"  I embrace it with humor and sometimes faux offense that they would recognize. 

It may be because of our group dynamics, but I've always had success with that.  They realize they've spoken too openly and perhaps offensively around a friend and are humbled/apologetic and then usually respond with some silly compliment like "You're just so cool I totally assumed you were a Dazzle".

I don't know how that would work for your group, but using a bit of humor can put people on notice that you have different beliefs without putting them on the defensive or shaming them.  You bring it up in a light-hearted way and it gives them an opening to respond back in a light-hearted way.  It also allows you to deflect further political conversations.  "So you're a Glitter?  Well, how do you feel about the economy blah-blah-blah?"   And you can say, "You want to know how I feel? I feel like another glass of wine/slice of pie".  If they push a bit you can continue to be light/upbeat but demonstrate you aren't going to get into a conversation about it and they take the hint.
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Chickadee on October 19, 2012, 03:53:56 PM
How did everything go, OP?
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: QueenofAllThings on October 19, 2012, 04:07:53 PM
It went well! One gentlemen 'in the other camp' brought up politics, but he's a very civilized guy. Everyone else stayed off the topic. Most were just delighted to be invited to a party, and kept asking "why? Why are you having a party?" I guess it's a rare thing around here!  :)
Title: Re: Help Me Plan My Bean Dip
Post by: Chickadee on October 19, 2012, 07:29:14 PM
I'm glad it went well!