Ideas from an Everything2000 contributor planning an extravagant gala
By Roger Rossom
(Editor's Note: If your thinking about having a special New Year's Eve party to remember, read what one Everything2000 contributor is planning)
What a moment in recorded history! The Millennium! It has occurred only one other time since Jesus Christ walked upon the Earth. That thought has prompted my wife, Ann, myself, and our close friends, Lynn and Bernie Kress, to celebrate this event in a truly historic way.
On New Year's Eve 1999, we are inviting about sixty friends to a costume party and historic dinner. Everyone will come dressed as the person they think is the most important to history in the last 1,000 years. The selected person can represent more than just himself, for example, Thomas Aquinas can represent the development of Western philosophical thought.
A set of Waterford Crystal champagne flutes crafted to commemorate the occasion is being offered as prize to the man and to the woman who can most convincingly defend their choice of persons. The competition is being judged by the Chain-ian Emeritus of the Department of History of the local university. The judge will be bedecked in full academic regalia.
The guests will each be introduced by an eighteenth century-clad herald. Before announcing the winners the judge will have the best three make their presentatios to the entire group. The decision of the judge will based upon the cogency of the argument and to a lesser extent the authenticity of the speaker's costume. Hopefully, among the guests there will be animated discussion regarding the importance of their person. I am sure Genghis Khan or Martin Luther will debate with Christopher Columbus (me).
The party will occur at my home. I am having a moving company remove some of my furniture out to make room for the guests. The guests will arrive at assigned staggered times. They will be picked up from the parking area in a decorated couch like vehicle and delivered to the front door through an aflee of lighted torches. The decorations will be "time" oriented.
There will a timeline on the wall and guests will indicate on the timeline where their person fits. On each table there will be a different kind of timepiece/clock. There be scattered about the house innumerable books on History, Atlases and Biographies. Out the back window will be 4x8 foot dayglow painted three-dimensional 2000 sign lighted by black light.
The dinner too will be appropriately historical. Each of the six courses will be from a different century and a different continent. My caterers, the Rivera Brothers, have done extensive research to guarantee the authenticity of the food served. (The chef is coming dressed as Escouffier.) For example, one of the rounds of drinks will be medieval mead and another will be grog, served around the world on British warships for the last 350 years. Of course, there will be an open bar for the less adventurous
The background music, too, will be historically accurate. A local musicologist is selecting music from each century starting with Gregorian Chant of the eleventh century and ending with rock and roll for the twentieth century. Needless to say we will sing Auld Lang Syne in original Scottish (words provided).The local invitations, which were a three page parchment reproduction, rolled and ribboned, were delivered by a sword-carrying cavalier with a red cape, mustache, and white plumed hat months ago. The messenger upon handing the document to each invitee only said "an invitation to history" and left..
And finally, each invitee will receive as a keepsake a framed photo of themselves in costumed in front of an 8 foot high hourglass replica I am having built for the occasion.
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