Ideal New Year’s Eve Vs. Actual New Year’s Eve

Ideal New Year’s Eve

You will appear inexplicably more attractive than you do the other 364 nights of the year. You’re getting haircuts, you’re removing dirt from beneath your fingernails, you’re brushing your teeth twice. An outfit is chosen at least a week in advance, sometimes purchased specifically for the celebration.

Actual New Year’s Eve

Your haircut is either unnoticeable or drawing the wrong kind of attention due to a frenzied atmosphere at the barber shop/ salon. You had an opportunity to speak up, to tell the hairdresser exactly what you wanted; but succumbed to feelings of pressure and inadequacy and instead defaulted to his expertise, figuring, “He’s a professional, he knows what he’s doing.”

You didn’t allow your nails ample time to dry because you rationalized that it wouldn’t make a difference, that they were Almost Dry and that’s almost as good as being Actually Dry, so you decide to leave the salon prematurely, ultimately chipping at least one nail or ingraining your own fingerprint on the surface of one of the nails before you even leave the parlor. Your nail technician doesn’t have time to fix it for you and is visibly disgusted that you’d even ask, after she’d told you expressly to be careful.

The outfit in question doesn’t fit properly due to indiscriminate overeating of sugar cookies and the presence of dairy in ~98% of all holiday dishes, which you’ve been eating with regularity for the past month and a half. Attire is changed roughly four times in a harried, desperate manner. Lines like, “Where are all of my clothes,” and, “I have nothing to wear,” and, “Do you have a black top I can borrow,” or maybe, “Christ I’m fat,” and simply, “Goddammit” are uttered at alarming frequency.

You brush your teeth only once.

Ideal New Year’s Eve

You will venture into [city of choice] without concrete plans, because this year you’re trying new things, this year you’re confident, this year you’re rebellious. You don’t need plans; you just need some friends and a pair of obnoxious 2012 glasses. You’ll make your own sequined fun.

Actual New Year’s Eve

You spend two hours finding a bar that isn’t at maximum capacity and isn’t charging a $90 cover. When you succeed, it takes 45 minutes to order a drink. You miss the ball dropping because you’re busy pantomiming VODKA SODA WITH BITTERS, NOT TWITTERS, NO WHAT, WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT EVEN, THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS VODKA SODA WITH TWITTERS, CHRIST, CAN I HAVE A BUDWEISER INSTEAD, JUST GIVE ME WHATEVER IS IN YOUR HAND, I DON’T CARE. Drink in hand, you watch as the most attractive man in the bar drunkenly tongues down the girl standing next to him, knowing it could’ve been you.

Ideal New Year’s Eve

You throw a party and comfort yourself re: pathetic attendance levels by repeatedly referencing 200 Cigarettes to yourself, i.e. this totally happened in 200 Cigarettes, which you happen to have playing on your living room television because you thought it’d be funny, and the film continues on loop like this until shockingly, everyone you’ve invited shows up; hours late but almost all at once and you curse yourself for being silly and paranoid as an unforgettable party unfolds.

Actual New Year’s Eve

You throw a party and comfort yourself re: pathetic attendance levels by repeatedly referencing 200 Cigarettes to yourself, i.e. this totally happened in 200 Cigarettes, which you happen to have playing on your living room television because you thought it’d be funny, and the film continues on loop like this for several hours on end, you realize, when you wake up the following morning and find that, via a blank call log and empty text message inbox, no one had any intention of coming to your party.

Ideal New Year’s Eve

You decide with the person you’ve just begun dating that you’ll spend New Year’s Eve apart as you’ve both made plans with other people, which you intend to keep, but after 4-5 drinks and several innuendo-laced text messages you plot to meet just before midnight. It’s 11:45 PM and the urgency is palpable but, true to romantic comedy form, you spot each other from across a crowded room/ bar/ elevator in the nick of time and are effectively groping one another come midnight.

Actual New Year’s Eve

You decide with the person you’ve just begun dating that you’ll spend New Year’s Eve apart as you’ve both made plans with other people, which you intend to keep. One of you instigates conversation via texts of a sexual nature, riling the both of you up until a breaking point is reached and you both decide you must bone, by any means necessary. Unfortunately, your phone dies before a meeting point is established and you find yourself alone, horny, and disappointed.

Ideal New Year’s Eve

You invite a girl you’re interested in to an intimate party with the intention of kissing her at midnight. The two of you hit it off upon her arrival and find A Quiet Place To Talk and you stay there, seemingly for hours. In the distance, you hear your friends counting down “4… 3… 2…,” and you kiss her. Despite melodramatic overtones, this feels simple and right.

Actual New Year’s Eve

The girl you’re interested in shows up to the intimate party you’ve invited her to with a group of loud, drunk friends, one of whom she is most definitely casually sleeping with. You learn that she’s heading to another party after this, but before she goes, do you have any weed she can buy from you? The following day, via her Facebook, she announces that she vomited later on that evening.

Ideal New Year’s Eve

You decide that you’re ‘over’ New Year’s Eve and that you’ll spend a quiet evening at home, ignoring the date. It is just a date, after all. You curl up with a book and have no regrets. Just another day.

Actual New Year’s Eve

Staying in with a book gets a bit tired, so you turn on the television and are bombarded with New Year’s Eve imagery. Every tweet and Facebook status update centers on NYE celebrations. At 12 AM, your phone begins to rattle with over-enthusiastic well wishes from numbers you don’t recognize. You try to call your mother, but the phone lines are busy. You pour yourself a glass of whiskey and give in to a Twilight Zone marathon. TC mark

Image via Krikit

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  • http://somuchtocome.blogspot.com/ Aja

    Yup.  Sounds like NYE.  That’s why I dread this holiday.  I actually tried to get myself scheduled for work, to avoid all this.  Unfortunately they scheduled me for the next day at 10am.  Someone in scheduling doesn’t like me very much.

  • http://www.facebook.com/grc15r Gregory Costa

    Ideal New Year’s Eve:  Busy watching The Twilight Zone marathon.  Actual New Year’s Eve:  Busy trying to ignore distractions to watch The Twilight Zone marathon. 

  • http://hotfemmeinthecity.wordpress.com/ natasia

    …I still want to try to have an idea New Year’s Eve! And my resolution for 2012 will be to admit defeat and stop trying…only to break it all bc 2013 is going to be a kickass NYE! Amirite?~

  • MILA

    EXACTLY ~ couldnt have said it better myself

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1363230138 Michael Koh

    Ideal New Years Eve: Drink with friends, have a memorable new years kiss, retreat to hotel and have a good rest of the night. 

    Actual New Years Eve: Drink in friends basement, black out at 11pm, wake up at 5am, throw up, and feel like death took a shit in your whiskey 

  • Wdeanis

    I really don’t like NYE… Everybody asks what the plans are but nobody will plan, and why do you require $80 tickets to get into your club? For the free midnight champagne toast? It’s Andre. I paid $10 to get in on Friday for drink-n-drown Budweiser night. I was the one that threw up on the dj booth. You’re not fancy as long as I’m still showing up. I dictate that.

  • http://twitter.com/AliPants Allison

    That last ‘actual New Years Eve’ sounds more like my Ideal New Years Eve.  Twilight Zone and whiskey? Hell yes.

  • guest

    The last scenario is dead on. A little part of me feels lame for staying in every year, but then I remember how much my night would likely suck if I went out.

  • Zsofia Hellyer

    You are awesome – your writing is superb (“the most private feelings are the most universal”, this you articulate with alarming and wonderful precision). I hope you write a book 0ne day (I was reminded of Ali Smith reading this but having read other articles of yours, I know you have your own unique style that deserves a huge audience).

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