General Etiquette > Holidays

Have you ever been the non-invited guest?

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I didn't want to hijack the other thread, so I will post my story here.

Many years ago, when I was just a lab duckling, I was ordered to attend a work dinner with my boss. A girl from Accounting and me were needed to be there "for support", he said. So he told us date, place and time, and gave us a guide for dressing accordingly, and dismissed us. We were very excited because it was going to be our first "business dinner", so we dressed very professionally, put very little makeup, and got to the restaurant in her car.

When we entered the restaurant everybody was standing chatting in groups and didn't notice us, so we toured the floor looking for our boss. He wasn't there. We recognized a man who had been to the lab several times, and very relieved we went to ask him... to find that it was the work dinner for his OTHER business (he managed one and was a partner in the other). Even more, he hadn't told them a thing about us.

We apologized and tried to leave, but they wouldn't let us. They ordered the waiters to put another table to elongate the already prepared one, and to prepare two more spaces. Everybody sat and made us sit with them, and even included us in the conversation. Which was a good thing, because my boss arrived ONE HOUR late, with his wife (who wasn't invited, either, but nobody told her) and didn't even look at us during the whole night. The girl and me were fuming, but we didn't say anything.

The following morning, at work, he only said that he expected we had enjoyed the dinner.  >:( >:( >:(

That's just awful, Gail! If this ever happens again, even if they try to do the gracious thing and let you into the dinner, insist you have other plans. "Oh I did have something important to do, thought boss needed me, so sorry for the misunderstanding." And hightail it out of there!

My awkward story:

Couple of halloweens ago, (in my pre ehell days) my sisters friends were having a party. "Are you sure I am invited?" I asked repeatedly.

Sister assured me that with this crowd the more the merrier and they wouldn't mind. Party day arrives and we all get ready. We arrive, after a few mishaps. Yeah... needless to say, the party was awkward... at least for me.

Many years ago a "friend" told me I was invited to lunch at another friends house. I was delighted with the invitation as I hadn't seen the other woman for a while. Day of lunch arrives and I arrive for lunch to find two others there too. Nothing was actually said but I caught looks amongst the other four (yes, including the person who told me I was invited). It was extremely uncomfortable and since that day I don't consider myself invited anywhere unless the invite comes from the host.

I still cringe thinking about it.

My dad took us once to a holiday parade in the nearby city, and for some unknown reason, during the parade decided to crash the office party of a local TV station whose building was along the parade route, with the lot of us in tow. We got kicked out.

I also got brought once as someone's "plus one" to a wedding, and some three hours into the reception when the groom came over to greet our table, realized from his awkward demeanor that the person probably hadn't been given a plus one at all. But at that point it was almost over, I'd already been there for hours and eaten, so there wasn't much to be done.

Well, kind of, yes. My best friend's boyfriend was part of another person's wedding party. She was his +1 for the party. I was staying with her for a few days (had to get out of my house or say some really stupid things to my parents) and she didn't want to abandon me, so she actually texted the bride and asked if I could come along.

Bride did say yes, it was a very small themed wedding (Robin Hood!) in a local park, and a potluck reception (don't get me started on that...) so it was all very informal. They were very gracious to have me there, and I actually met my boyfriend that day, so it didn't end up being too bad.

In elementary school I never fit in. I'd always get the invitations to Halloween or birthday parties for all my classmates, but after the first few years of having every single classmate stare at me when I showed up, I stopped going. I may have been invited, but I wasn't wanted. It wasn't worth the humiliation of showing up and knowing I wasn't wanted, it was better to just not tell my parents I had an invitation in the first place.


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