Author Topic: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner  (Read 13549 times)

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C0mputerGeek

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2010, 04:42:00 PM »
Here is a working link

I guess I'll just comment on the article in general. I still enjoy attending birthday bashes. Last year, I flew out to DC for a friend's 40th birthday party. His wife organized a surprise party. It was a lovely affair; I hand a grand time. I also attended a 40th Birthday Party Scavenger Hunt. It was a blast. One of the groups cheated scandalously - instead of finding items the went to the library and copied magazines with photos of the items - but even that brought several laughs. I've hosted themed New Year's Eve Party (my birthday is on New Year's Day).

I am not getting the whole, "birthday parties suck," theme in the article. I've even enjoyed birthday dinners.

DottyG

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2010, 04:48:16 PM »
If this author were my friend, I would save him the trouble.  I wouldn't invite him to begin with - he sounds like a real stick in the mud.


peach2play

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2010, 04:51:47 PM »
In my group, should we do a birthday dinner, it's understood that everyone, including the birthday party, pays for their own meal.  Keeps the drinks from getting out of hand.

Lady Snowdon

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2010, 04:52:58 PM »
Next time I invite people out for my birthday, I'll have to keep in mind that it is my job to make sure we have a certain type of server, to make sure everyone I invite is within the same income bracket, and that I only invite people from one area of my life, to avoid awkward feelings.  ::)  If it's so hard for him to enjoy a dinner party, I'll save him the trouble of having to RSVP "no" in the future.

lolane

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2010, 04:58:12 PM »
I totally understand the authors sentiments and I don't think he's being a stick in the mud. I hate this sort of setup because inevitably someone orders the most expensive meal, or several expensive drinks, or a couple of bottles of wine and expensive appetizers and then the whole group is supposed to split the check evenly! I've been to dinners where the amount of food and drinks I've had would have totaled less than $30 after tax and tip, but I've been asked to chip in upwards of $75 because everyone wants to split the check (at times I have successfully protested, but it's really a terrible position to be in). I hardly think that not wanting to pay more than double the price of what you've actually consumed makes you a stick in the mud.

I've stopped attending this types of parties, because on top of the problems the author describes, there is also the issue of some people not putting in enough money so that others have to pick up the slack. The whole thing is just terrible.

I am of the belief that birthday parties should be paid for by the host. If the host cannot afford to pay for everyone's dinner, then they shouldn't have a birthday party at a restaurant. I also dislike when people say, "in my group of friends it's accepted" because I'm sure my friends think it's accepted too, but I know I don't like it and I know other friends don't either.

ladycrim

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2010, 04:58:15 PM »
I think the article's author is trying to convey that a combination of being in an uncomfortable situation (surrounded by people he doesn't know, who would rather talk to others than to him) and being stuck with an exorbitant share of the check is no fun.  I can't say I blame him for either of these feelings.

I enjoy attending birthday dinners, but in my circle of friends, they are usually at reasonably-priced restaurants and everyone gets their own check.  I don't recall offhand whether the B-day person and their significant other get paid for or not.

I did go to one restaurant that was very expensive for our group's financial situations, and we got the check sprung on us at the end of the night.  (Thank heavens I only ordered an appetizer.)  I declined future birthday dinners for that person and her boyfriend.

Squeaks

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2010, 05:03:50 PM »
I think it is his own fault for not speaking up.

The cheap skate grad student has the right idea. 

It is also his fault for joining in.  It sounds like he did end up ordering on par with the rest of them, so he has little to complain about. 

I also disagree that breaking it down is too much match.  It really is not.  Keep a running total in your head of what you ordered and be done with it. 


Hushabye

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2010, 05:04:03 PM »
It sounds like what he has a problem with is equally splitting a check.  That being the case, he needs to learn to speak up and request an "every (wo)man for her/himself" setup, as his other friend did.

ydpubs

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2010, 05:06:03 PM »
I would also have to agree with the author. I would not be happy at all to get stuck paying more than twice the money for what I actually ordered. I am fortunate that my group of frineds never goes overboard with ordering super expensive stuff and everyone always overpays so we have to redistribute money back to everyone because the waiter would end up getting an 80% tip if we just left all the money. LOL!!!
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Ferrets

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2010, 05:06:11 PM »
I think the article's author is trying to convey that a combination of being in an uncomfortable situation (surrounded by people he doesn't know, who would rather talk to others than to him) and being stuck with an exorbitant share of the check is no fun.  I can't say I blame him for either of these feelings.

Completely agree. I'm absolutely fine with pay-your-own-way restaurant dinners for a birthday, but definitely echo PPs on having separate bills, or only chipping in for what I ordered (plus a contribution to the tip). It might make me look stingy to some, but frankly I've been stiffed once too often by the dreaded merry cry of "Let's divvy it all up equally!" :P

Flat-fee buffet restaurants make things much easier, too. :)

WillyNilly

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2010, 05:07:10 PM »
Here is a working link

I guess I'll just comment on the article in general. I still enjoy attending birthday bashes. Last year, I flew out to DC for a friend's 40th birthday party. His wife organized a surprise party. It was a lovely affair; I hand a grand time. I also attended a 40th Birthday Party Scavenger Hunt. It was a blast. One of the groups cheated scandalously - instead of finding items the went to the library and copied magazines with photos of the items - but even that brought several laughs. I've hosted themed New Year's Eve Party (my birthday is on New Year's Day).

I am not getting the whole, "birthday parties suck," theme in the article. I've even enjoyed birthday dinners.

Apparently you didn't read the article.  The author is all for birthday parties.  its birthday dinners - complete with footing a split bill - he is objecting to.  He flat out says if you invite him out/over for a party he will gladly attend.  

Honestly I'm posting a link to this on my FB page as subtle hint. I completely agree with the author - the "birthday dinner" at the moderately fancy restaurant is way too expensive.  If you are having a party you are hosting, which means you are paying.  And with big groups, especially in places like NYC where often you cannot have more then 2-3 checks per table, as the author mentions often you do get stuck paying for other people's extravagances, and for what?  To be sat next to someone you really don't want to spend that kind of money to dine with.

lolane

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2010, 05:11:07 PM »
It sounds like what he has a problem with is equally splitting a check.  That being the case, he needs to learn to speak up and request an "every (wo)man for her/himself" setup, as his other friend did.

I've actually tried this more than once and have been told (more than once) that the restaurant would not split the checks that many times. They'd be happy to do it if people were asking to split checks 2 ways, but not 10 ways.

So, the inability to split the check sometimes leads to trying to split the check yourself which inevitably leads to disputes as one person with a cell phone calculator tries to figure out who ordered the 3 long island iced teas.



Lady Snowdon

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2010, 05:13:34 PM »
My issue with the article is that it seems like he blames his friend Simon for everything that happened, from the waiter promoting appetizers on forward.  I would have an issue with most of the things listed as well, but it's not his friend's fault!  Even at the end he says it's the memory of "Simon's party" that allows him to say no.  He's attached all blame for what happened to Simon.

WillyNilly

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Re: Under no circumstances will I be attending your stupid birthday dinner
« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2010, 05:14:24 PM »
I am of the belief that birthday parties should be paid for by the host. If the host cannot afford to pay for everyone's dinner, then they shouldn't have a birthday party at a restaurant. I also dislike when people say, "in my group of friends it's accepted" because I'm sure my friends think it's accepted too, but I know I don't like it and I know other friends don't either.

Me too.  A party is a hosted affair, plain & simple.  The article wasn't about parties, it was about the dreaded "dinner".  Its an accepted practice amongst my friends as well, but quite a few really dislike the tradition and think its obnoxious... And the unfortunate outcome is, for events such as my birthday, I pay/host my celebration... but then for several friend's birthdays I'm expected to pay for myself and chip in for them... so I end up paying twice and they end up getting 2 free meals.

Like the author, I tend to decline such invites unless its my very best friend (who refuses to think its rude to expect guests to pay...)