Sunday, October 18, 2015

Jodi

Last week was John Michael's birthday so we decided to throw him a Halloween-themed birthday party at my house because I refuse to treat any of my 30-something-year-old friends like they are any older than 9.

I decided it would need to be a small intimate gathering and quickly invited Matt and Wade. John Michael moved to Salt Lake City earlier this year from some place in the south where they give everyone two first names and legally require you to call them by BOTH names even though the rest of us get by just fine with only one. Because he's newish in town, he's still assimilating and getting to know people.

I know that he's made various friends while living in SLC, but I don't really know any of them.  Matt and Wade were really the only two people I knew John Michael knew and so they were the only two people I knew to invite to his birthday party.

I was having some birthday party planning anxiety leading up to the big day because who has ever heard of a good birthday party with only four people. But I didn't want to invite people John Michael didn't know because that seemed inappropriate too.

You guys. This was a true crisis situation.

The night before the "big" birthday party, John Michael had sent a message out to various people from different parts of his life, inviting all who were interested to meet at the piano bar downtown (we are one-trick ponies and only go to exactly one place every weekend). So, we all gathered there and saw that John Michael had an assortment of great friends we had never met.

Now, a more responsible version of myself would have capitalized on this opportunity and wandered around the room inviting each of these people to the next day's birthday party. But y'all. This never crossed my mind. And the next morning when it finally occurred to me that I could have done this, I realized that I didn't even remember a single person's name from that group and so had no way of reaching out to them.

I made this plight known to Wade when I saw him on Sunday morning and he excitedly informed me that he had exchanged contact info with Jodi, one of John Michael's friends from that night, and he could totally text her and see if she could come.

So they texted.

Wade: Hey Jodi! John Michael is having a birthday party today. You should come!

Jodi: Sorry . . . who is this?

Wade: This is Wade. We met last night at the piano bar. I think you should come to this party today.

Jodi: Oh . . . thanks for the invite. I'll definitely stop by.

Wade texted her the party details and that was that.

We were relieved and proud of ourselves that we were going to have one of John Michael's friends make a surprise appearance at his birthday party. And five sounded like a much less depressing number than four so my anxiety levels went down at least three notches.

Then I went to work preparing for the party. I made an elaborate dinner, including pumpkin stew, pumpkin bread, a homemade pumpkin cheesecake, pumpkin drinks, an assortment of pumpkin candies, etc. I excessively decorated my house with fake spider webs, insomuch that you had to duck when you walked around inside. I played Halloween music. Wade and Matt brought pumpkins and carving supplies.



This was going to be a birthday party for the history books.

We put the final touches on the preparations just as John Michael arrived, looking horrified because he was probably thinking we were just going to have a very low-key birthday party hang out.

John Michael: Wow. You guys really went all out. Thank you.

Eli: No problem! We're so excited it's your birthday!

Wade: And we have a special guest coming!

John Michael: Who is it?

Wade: Your friend Jodi!

John Michael: Who?

Wade: Jodi! Your friend who was there last night?

John Michael: Jodi? Do I know a Jodi?

Wade: Yes. She was your friend you were talking to for a while at that one table toward the back.

John Michael: Yeah . . . I just met her last night at the piano bar.

Eli: Wait. She wasn't part of our group? She's not a friend of yours?

There was a long awkward silence in the room as all four of us realized that Jodi very likely thought she was going to be stopping by a large party of friends and acquaintances and NOT a very intimate and elaborate birthday dinner for which the invite list was so exclusive that I would literally have extra chairs around the table in my tiny dining room.

And then, there was a knock on the door.

Jodi was welcomed into my home wherein we forced her to eat our food, listen to our stories, carve our pumpkins, take our pictures, and sing happy birthday. FOR THE NEXT FOUR HOURS.

If she wasn't our best friend before the party, she certainly became it by the end.

~It Just Gets Stranger


Jodi took this picture. John Michael works for the University of Utah and evidently takes his role very seriously. Also, we have no idea what the hell Wade carved. 

28 comments:

  1. I was afraid that this post was going to be about another toenail falling off. It was such a relief to find out it wasn't so.

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    1. I literally thought the same thing... I was waiting on a picture and everything!

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  2. I would've died of awkwardness or embarrassment if I had been Jodi. But of course she became all of your guys' best friend by the end of the night. Who wouldn't?

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    1. Hmm... I can't seem to just post a comment anymore, so I had to tag onto yours, Anonymous. I give full points to Jodi, who said she would come, and came and stayed and probably had a great time. Sounds like she's a pretty cool gal! Happy Birthday John Michael!

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  3. Were the first few hours a little awkward? Just curious.

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  4. I am so glad that none of you know what he carved on his pumpkin either because I spent entirely too much time on instagram trying to make sense of this ONE picture. who posted 17 obnoxious selfies last night? who's at the gym gettin' swole? who's on a jealousy inducing beach vacay? (#blessed) I DON'T KNOW because I spent all night trying to figure out what this pumpkin is supposed to be telling me. Now please excuse me while I go reevaluate my priorities.

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  5. It's a ghost and it says "BOO!" at the bottom. Good job Wade!!

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    1. I see it now, nice use of negative space young Wade.

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    2. I thought it said "BOD" and Wade was just super proud of being in great shape or something. I had no clue what the picture was though. This description makes much more sense.

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    3. Now I see that too and I can't stop thinking of those old annoying body spray commericals "Hot bod!"

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    4. I totally saw the word "BOO!" but I thought the picture looked more stormtrooperish . . . . maybe I'm just obsessed with the new Star Wars trailer and buying my tickets for a movie I won't see for another two months . . .

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    5. Oh good, there's more then just me on this board that is obsessed with Star Wars. Excellent.

      Did you buy your tickets? I'm still trying to figure out which site to go to in Canada to get mine.

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    6. Nothing wrong with Wade's pumpkin, Eli. It's the #2 pumpkin that is puzzling. What is that?

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    7. Number 2? Wade's is the second one.

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    8. Matt Pants is the first one. I'm sure Ollie Pants helped him carve it.

      ...I can't believe I just referred to them as Pants.

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  6. Welcome to the fold Jodi, hanging with Strangers at a random birthday party like a twice up the barrel once down the side kind of boss.

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  7. Eli, in a panic over his incredibly poor housekeeping skills, pretends to decorate his kitchen with "fake" cobwebs.

    Kudos, Eli!

    And, I'm totally stealing this idea..and am decorating in dust and cobwebs for ALL THE HOLIDAYS from this day forward.

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  8. I think you're all missing the real point here, which is this: What the hell is pumpkin stew, and do we really want an answer to that question?

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    1. The description of the food made me remember this linen spray from BPAL, I laughed way to hard when I read the description: https://blackphoenixtradingpost.com/shop/pumpkin-spice-everything-home-linen-spray-2015/

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  9. And I'm sure Jodi had a lovely time and can't wait for the next party!

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    1. But the real question is did they force her to join relative finder to see if she was related to them all?

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  10. But where is Jodi's pumpkin? Maybe 'Jodi' just the name for the timer on Eli's phone

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    1. Eli steals these pictures from someone he stalks on Facebook and then creates elaborate stories to explain them

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  11. How did I not know that Eli is a big Batman fan? Or is it just a Halloween thing?

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  12. Well, this wasn't me, but I wish it was! It's enough excitement for me to just see somebody who spells it the same way - meaning, the RIGHT way. :-) Jodi's are pretty cool as a general rule. It comes of going through life constantly having your name misspelled and learning to just wing it. If you are short on Jodi's for a future party, let me know and I'll see if I can fit the 20 hour drive into my schedule.

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  13. After coming back to the picture a few times every few days, I finally see the ghost. When others pointed out the "BOO!" I could see that, but I didn't see the ghost. Now I get it. The letters are made with the missing parts of pumpkin (the candlelight), but the ghost is made with the pumpkin part that is still there. So something about mixing the negative space with the positive space made it kind of confusing to figure out. Or something like that. But I finally see it. *phew*

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  14. I'm disappointed that this post was NOT all about me...

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