Later the same Saturday I went to two parties. One was full of marrieds. One was full of singles.
Both had their own special merits, but I’ve never really experienced such a stark contrast in one evening. It’s rare to be in a situation where the company is exclusively married or exclusively single these days – even when I’m with people entirely my own age, people are involved in all kinds of different stages of relationships.
At the marrieds party, the only non-marrieds were my friend JS and me. The ladies chatted about their kids. The blokes talked about DIY. JS and I don’t have any kids and we’ve never had much cause to get out a saw and cut things. So we were at a conversational disadvantage. The lovely hosts chatted away to us while we clocked two of the guys checking out the hinges and brackets on doors and shelves, and critiquing the angle of a radiator… It was, we concluded, another world.
We left and headed to our second party, the ‘singles’ party. We also fitted all kinds of stereotypes – slightly overdressed for a house party, lots of circulating and perhaps trying a little too hard to make an impression on strangers, some dancing, clever banter, and the occasional pair sneaking themselves off into a corner. But, it should be noted, since it was a Christian party, no numbers, or saliva, were exchanged…