Friday night took us to the County Arms, after our pub of choice proved to be overloaded. About an hour later a bunch (a darkness? A mass suicide? an anthology? - help me out with the accepted collective noun here) of goths descended, among whom appeared the lovely emarkienna, so we said hello and that was jolly nice.
Saturday involved my traditional avoidance of playing any tiddlywinks whatsoever, followed by lunch in the Hat & Feathers. J had brought his nice American wife M, who (amusingly) got noticibly annoyed when J did his traditional friendly - and indeed hypocritical - goading of me for being fat. Complicated drinking games aplenty were enjoyed, and then I left everyone in the pub at about 3:30 to go to the hairdressers. In recent years I've found this to be an excellent idea, as not only do I get my hair looking reasonable, but making an appointment in advance imposes the discipline of time and therefore limits my alcohol intake during those crucial few hours in the late afternoon before the dinner, thus giving me a chance to sober up before the main event.
For the first time the dinner was held in Selwyn, as the Senior Treasurer S has recently changed college allegiance (from Queens'); he had sent out a heartfelt plea by email several days previously explaining that Selwyn expects certain standards of behaviour and some societies have been banned from holding meetings in college because of rowdiness at dinners etc. etc. So please could we avoid spilling anything on the priceless Persian carpet?
In the event, it all passed off pretty peacefully. I told my parrot joke and it seemed to go down reasonably well (I think I may make it my traditional one from now on). I thought the dinner itself was pretty good: a nice red pepper soup, fried breaded camembert, crown of partridge, lemon brulée and copious wine, coffee etc. All for a mere 34 guineas.
I then stayed up until 5:30 in the morning with the other people who were crashing at S's flat. Some of us even went for a late night wander; B didn't fancy it so stayed in with the designated mobile, and then me and the "twa Daves" (as I call them in my own mind) went for a quick walk taking in the silence and looking for further parties, which we never found. DBW and I eventually left the other D to it as he wanted to wander down to Pembroke to throw stones at someone's window or something, so the two of us wandered back to S's flat and gave it a quick round of "We're off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of Oz" across the lawn. It was all very reminiscent of being a student or something. Jolly pleasant.
I woke up on Sunday feeling more bouncy than I had a right to expect, but sadly had missed the first couple of rounds of tiddlywinks and so had to go straight to the pub. Tant pis. Then I played drinking games all day until about 7pm or so, when we all decamped to S's flat to play The Dictionary Game, which is a bit like Balderdash, only smaller. B fucked up by not reading out the correct answer on a round that I'd tried particularly hard in, inventing some bullshit about a scientist studying properties of selaginella; I was really proud of it too, and would have got four points had the round not been a bogey. Damn him and his throaty drunkenness.
A quick namecheck: 'twas good to see the scintillating despotliz, the positively coruscating camcub and the perma-effervescent thecritick. Hopefully I'll get to see you all again soon.
Hooray for winks!