Christmas came. Presents were opened, feasts were prepared, stomachs were gorged. Christmas went. And to all a good night. No, this isn’t one of those “thank god Christmas is over” rants, but rather a call to arms. Gone are the days of tug-o-war between religion and consumerism, replaced by the final stop of the holiday season. New Years: when people can step down from their pulpits and wipe their hearts off their sleeves, putting it somewhere safe for a night, because that shirt is coming off. It’s time to party.
I love partying. Everybody parties. Evidence of people purposely fermenting beverages for alcohol dates back to the neolithic period, 10,000 years ago. Give that a second. That means before humankind had developed the wheel, they were trying to get hammered. And why not? If you’re stuck in a cave with nothing to do except draw pictures of aliens on the walls and ignore your ogre of a wife, what else is there to do? Not to mention, they didn’t have to worry about getting a DUI. But that’s neither here nor there.
Point is, everyone wants to celebrate. It’s as human as curiosity. Every culture that has unsettled the earth beneath them, every individual that has bartered oxygen with carbon dioxide inside their lungs, EVERYONE has had a concept of partying. It is truly one of the most universal values across humanity.
It makes sense when you think about what the ability to party entails. If you have the time and resources to take a break from working just to have a good time, odds are you’re probably doing all right in the grand scheme of things. As a result, you actually have things to celebrate, like the very abundance that provided you the opportunity in the first place. It’s self-fulfilling.
That being said, partying, like the internet, seems to be a mine of untapped unifying potential; our typical association of partying is similar to our typical usage of the internet–kegstands being the proverbial Farmville of our party lives. But I believe there’s more to partying than going to sleep in closets and waking up in vomit.
Those of you who know me personally are probably rolling your eyes right now. And I don’t blame you. Where does someone who went by “Nitro” in college, who was known for blacking out, getting naked and shitting on himself (that’s for another blog entry) get off on preaching the merits of partying? It’s true; if I were to tell you my idea of partying, it would consist of shapeless stories, hazy Rorschach silhouettes of tempered drug use, apocalypse inspired drinking and insecurity-ridden sex. In hindsight, my partying days teeter between adolescent nostalgia and adult regrets.
But I’m a changed man now, and I can say my palate for partying has diversified tremendously. Family dinner? That’s a party. Movies with friends? That’s a party, too. Doing pull-ups at the park at 9:30pm with your friend and co-blogger? Fuck it, that’s partying in my book. Why not expand our definition of party to a broader concept, one that involves anyone at any time, because I want everybody to party. Merriam-Webster, take note:
To bring happiness to oneself or others, to behave with positive intent.
If it’s not already abundantly clear, what I’m trying to say is that partying doesn’t require alcohol. Or loud music. Or scantily clad women, or even poor decision-making (though that is a tried-and-true combination for a good one).
Life can be a party. That isn’t to say everything that happens will be a good thing, or that you have to try and twist your perspective to convince yourself that shit really isn’t shit, because part of life is trudging through the feces you encounter (not an homage to the aforementioned story about me shitting myself, by the way). Every party has it’s hangover, and that’s a good thing, because it means you had an epic time before.
At the end of the day, if you’re goal is to party for the rest of your life, you can. Try it. When someone hits you up and asks what you’re doing, tell them you’re partying. International Ambassador of All Things Party (Andrew WK) said it best: “You can spend tons of time trying to figure out life, or you can just party and have an awesome life automatically.”
Just remember, everyone you know – even the people you don’t like – want to party. It’s just a matter of figuring out how they party. From there, you can learn how to be the wingman, how to enhance the party atmosphere. This builds positive connectivity between people, in a world that is otherwise increasingly teaming with negative connections (or none at all).
My New Years Resolution: party on. Join me.