Cliques that Clack

Cliques that Clack

The night was an odd one filled with strangers and friends and friends of friends and strangers with friends. During the cooling months of early fall, the weather lends itself well to the shutting off of air conditioning units in preparation for winter. A fine line exists wherein cooling mechanisms are no longer needed and warming methods are not yet necessary. This late-atmospheric condition makes for the most comfortable, party experience. When was the last time you met a stranger (outside of the workplace) and interacted with that person for an extended period of time? How people meet and become friends seems to be a great mystery. Watching as groups and cliques consistently only meet with each other, always doing the same banal activities, always participating in each other’s birthdays and celebrations, one wonders how quickly the good ol’ gang grows tired and weary from a lack of new additions.

Sure, one can assume and ascertain the level of comfort that’s built and lived within when thinking of and interacting with the same core group of people and friends, but the sameness must also become a bore, monotonous, inescapable after years of obligatory get-togethers. But to admit the obligation would be to admit one’s own failure as a person who belongs to a group that has dwindled to boredom. The situation is thusly understood as a necessary … evil? The catch-22 of friend groups drying out and succumbing to staleness is obvious; no one wants to admit that their group is totally lame. When, however, a portion of a group is confronted with the reality that the comfort and reliability boils down to the fact that the group is full of losers who are afraid to make new friends, the group (presumably) entrenches itself deeper into believing, aspiring, deluding themselves with cackles about how they are and are part of a cool and desirable group. And then a stranger throws a party that brings together portions of differing groups in an attempt to reveal to each group how truly lame and pathetic their respective groups are.

The night, still young, held all of the possibility. Games, food, social lubricant and a relaxed, cool atmosphere prepared, the party went swimmingly well as various people mixed and mingled with strangers, acquaintances of friends and friends of friends. Everything about the festive Saturday Night In November unfolded and matched the great expectation, that is, until someone vomited to such an extent that the entire buzz of the evening vanished. No matter, the party had neared its end, and so, the guests trickled back to their homes as the host attempted, in vain, to quell the venue of the stench with all sorts of scented accoutrements. As the last guest lingered in the entryway and grappled at the final opportunity to have an intelligent conversation with someone intelligent, the likelihood that these groups would ever mix and mingle with people they do not know, seemed null. The host could hardly give a care about the well-being of these cliques for the point had been made. Despite the fact that this coming together of varied people happened many years ago, it seems that the guests learned nothing from that brief experience of encountering and socializing with new people outside the comforts of their own small, miserable groups.

As the sun poked its shining face over the farthest horizon, a sad simple truth befell everyone who attended that Saturday Night. Most people, one can now confidently assume, want to be better than the people around them. To have all the groups become friendly with each other would be to surrender each group’s perceived status among the various groups. And so, each portion of each group that attended the party returned to their respective base camps and strategized about how to be the best group of all the groups. The thing, nevertheless, that these groups fail to understand is that they’re all on the same playing field —in the same boat. The point isn’t to be the best among losers; the point, obviously, is to reach higher heights, to no longer play among the weak and ineffectual, to be among the group at the very top within a social bracket of which these mere lemmings can only dream.