28 July 2008

I’m Never Invited Back Again……

Went to lunch yesterday. Yup – another one. Another BBQ. But I suspect I wont be invited back. This is nothing new. Julie and I have experienced several dozen occasions where we were invited to lunch/dinner only to be ignored the next time an invitation was being issued. I suspect if they felt comfortable about inviting Julie without me….. they would.

Mike and Lesley are consummate hosts. They have run a series of B&Bs both in England and in our area in southern France and know instinctively how to treat their guests. They have a beautiful house, an amazing garden and no kids – bliss ! The Reverend Anne was there as the only other guest.

Lunch started with some dim sum which was delicious. I managed to avoid the crab and prawn based dishes and headed immediately for the pork spring rolls – delicious. God I sound like Michael Winner !

Next up was rare beef with prawns and a variety of salad and vegetable based dishes one of which was grilled mushrooms. Just as we started to work out what we were going to dig into first, the ubiquitous fly appeared. Now, normally after a few swipes these pesky creatures fly off , but not this one. It continued to buzz around landing on every dish which was on the table. I stepped in and said I would rid the table of this critter and promptly demonstrated the art of clapping and squishing the fly between your two palms. After two failed attempts I took another swig of Rosé and tried again. The fly sped past, I slapped my palms together and got it. The fly climbed upwards momentarily and then headed straight into the grilled mushrooms in a glorious death spiral. The table stopped talking as they all looked at the dish of mushrooms. Had it really gone in there ?

Julie and I grabbed the dish and started looking for the 4 legged insect but after about a minute realised that the mushrooms had started to disintegrate during the cooking process and that there were lots of ‘black bits’ . The body of the fly was nowhere to be found but Julie managed to pick out a bit of mushroom which was similar to a dead fly and we exclaimed loudly that ‘we’d got it’. It wasn’t convincing.

At this stage I could have refused mushrooms and stuck to the potato salad but I felt as if I had to show confidence in our body removal process and cagily picked up bits of fungus from the dish and loaded them onto my plate, checking carefully that none of the bits had what looked like 4 legs.

I noticed that nobody else was taking mushrooms and that did it. I didn’t need to be told – that was my last invitation to Mike and Lesley’s.

Now this is nothing new – I have a history of being the worst dinner guest ever. I have broken a three hundred year old dining table and smashed expensive crystal glasses. I have bitten the hostess on the nose (by mistake) and given her a bruise Mike Tyson would be proud of. I’ve done a striptease and cleared a New Year’s Eve Party and given a friend a magnificent love bite on her neck (again by mistake) when she was booked into the Monte Carlo Spa for the following three days. I’ve thrown sausage rolls across the kitchen to the host’s boxer dogs and snogged women for a cigarette, much to Julie’s disgust . I’ve set bits of myself on fire and have generally behaved like a prize prat.

So, I am a liability. If you want a party to end early, invite me. If you want to start a fight just to see what actually happens, invite me. If you want people to get divorced, invite me. In fact if you want a good time with something to talk about during the long winter nights when you’re drawing up your summer barbeque invite list – invite me.

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