Thursday, 13th August 2020

How to start having dreadful middle class dinner parties again

WITH two households now able to meet, it’s the perfect opportunity to start showing off at dinner parties again. Here’s how to make them particularly irksome.

Think of some smug lockdown conversations

Dinner parties are for keeping people captive without actually tying them up while you show off. Tell your guests lockdown has been wonderful for bonding with your kids, exercising and your sex life. Be quite explicit – they will enjoy thinking about your sex organs while eating.

Moan about getting hold of ingredients

Don’t hold back on the melodrama. Getting fresh coriander has been ‘impossible’ and ‘a nightmare’. Perhaps share a toe-curling anecdote, for example: “I spent six hours online trying to source Grana Padano then broke down in tears because I felt I’d failed as a wife and mother.”

Have a blazing row 

The worst dinner parties involve the host couple ripping each other to shreds over various simmering resentments as guests quietly die of embarrassment. And after months of lockdown together, you should be ready to go off like a Trident warhead.

Imply your so-so meal is three-star Michelin fare

No change from pre-lockdown times, but remember to do it. List every farm shop ingredient in your French poulet with wild mushrooms as if you’re a top Paris chef, when it’s basically just chicken with a bit of cream. People will love the awkward atmosphere of going along with a blatant lie.

Take the post-dinner chat to new levels of boredom

You already had long conversations about pensions or what your son is doing at Exeter University, so lockdown is an exciting new vein of tedium to mine. Did you take up batik then give up without any notable results or funny stories about it? Drone on for at least 20 minutes.