Quarter Life Crisis

The world according to Sven-S. Porst

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This Saturday, the Running Dinner took place. We sent out messages to everyone, giving the details of their partners and the locations of their meals at the beginning of the week and everybody who participated did a great job of getting in contact and cooking. Some people made an effort. Others made a really big effort.

For Jan-Philipp and myself, having organised the whole event, the past days were quite stressful. Not only did making the plans turn out to be quite time-consuming – not that we wanted to influence things too much, just to make sure the people who eat together don’t know each other (too well), which would ruin the whole aspect of getting to know new people. Besides that we also needed to make sure that no kitchen was used twice for the same meal (in flats from which there were several participants) and get the whole veggie / allergy / … thing right. We managed but it took much longer than anticipated.

For sending the e-mails to everybody that confirmed their participation and gave them the address of their partner and the route they were going to take that night, I wrote a little AppleScript to compile those messages automatically. This is something I really can’t recommend. Probably writing a proper Cocoa app for this would be easier. The address book’s scripting capabilities are so awkward it’s not funny anymore. I didn’t enjoy that. Let me also note that the address book lacks gender information which is sad if you’re using a language which is more complicated than English. In that case there’s no easy way to adjust the text automatically. To end this topic on a high note: there were a few remarks on how we seemed to have used a clever script for the whole invitation stuff. Which was nice.

On Saturday there remained a lot of work to do. We decided to buy a glass for every participant and print our logo and their name on it – not print directly, that is, but print on a special paper that you can ‘bake’ onto the glass. Everybody received their glass with a welcome cocktail at the party. Let’s just say that this didn’t work out exactly as planned. Many of the names didn’t stick as well as they should and the whole creation process was quite a pain. A nice idea which everybody liked but not quite as cool as we had imagined it in the end.

In addition to that we had to set up our flat for the party as with 43 participants we didn’t have enough people to fill the bigger hall we could have used. There wasn’t enough time and we were quite busy at the last minute. Thankfully, my cooking partner assisted us and had already prepared some food beforehand. When the eating started, so did the fun. Even the less exciting meals were fine. And everybody served a lot of wine. People really wanted to shine in that respect.

… which caused people to be quite tipsy at the time when the party started. The party worked out wonderfully. We had a very comfortable ‘filling’ of our flat. Everybody could meet the people they ate with or they had heard of during other meals. We had a big sheet which was to become a big menu with all the meals being put on there by their cooks (and almost all of them really were). We also took photos of everyone when they arrived and gave them a welcome cocktail.

While the party started slowly with most people arriving much later than 11, it started building up with time. We weren’t quite sure this would work out so well. Everybody was quite filled by both food and alcohol at the time and people might have been tired. A few people did indeed leave early but everybody else stayed really long with the last people leaving around six and me collapsing on my bed by exhaustion then. Fun.

Since, we’ve done all the relevant cleaning and speaken to some people all of whom were equally wasted and hungover today. We’ll have photos up soon.

November 7, 2004, 22:01

Tagged as food.

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