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SOS! Stop overdoing surprises


Surprise Birthday Parties. Everyone in my huge group of friends has had one and continues to have one every year, which means that Iím attending a SBP almost every month (make that every week). Somehow the novelty has not waned and has almost become a part of our lives- an obsession. The spouse will go to lengths to make it surprising enough by altering some modus operandi that had been previously employed by another so much so that not getting a SBP has become the recent surprising factor. Usually parties in the weekend that were much preferred by us working class have been brutally shifted to weekdays so that the birthday person can get sufficiently surprised by the fact that some suckers would take precious rest time off and drive miles away to say ďSURPRISE!Ē. Weekday evenings not being surprising anymore, weekday midnights are being preferred. The bar, the food, the ambience can all go out of the window as long as a group of friends congregate secretly and manage to shock the living daylights of the birthday person. The higher the shock levels the better. I have seen it all- Theme parks, ski resorts, strip clubs, basket ball games, old age homesÖ


A week before the event, the dreadful email generally goes like this:


People, itís Victimís birthday on A date. Please try and be at this B place at sharp C pm and not a second later. As usual follow the protocol for SBP.


Harassed Spouse of Victim (if only previous SBP hadnít set the bar so high... Up yours! Suffer next spouse!)


The protocol for invitees-

-Do not utter a word to the victim about his impending disaster and casually allude to other places you are likely to be at the date in question

-Mentally prepare yourself to spend on something you really don't care for just to prove your friendship and for that sweet element of revenge.

-Leave everything you are doing or would have loved to do at that time and rush to the venue as nonchalantly as possible.

-If you are the designated cake bearer, rush to the nearest bakery and pick up any random cakeÖafter all itís not your birthday and you are dieting.

-Coordinate with the other forty people by cell phone till your ears melt.

-Even as professional adults, hide behind bar stools and stay as stationary as possible trying to filter out other peopleís stares. 

Protocol for birthday person-

-Do not allude to the fact that impending disaster is very well known and innocently add that birthday celebrations may include a nice dinner at home (hopes you have kiddo)

-Do not plan anything personal for the week and get whisked away as nonchalantly as possible. Make minimal drama to create aura that you were not really prepared to get whisked away.

-Ask spouse what to wear. Depending on where the surprise is going to take place, you better make sure you donít end up in a skating rink with a bathing suit. It has happened.

-Try to pop some Valium before embarking on this journey. You may not like the place or the people and you may be required to smile.

-Act sufficiently surprised when everyone pops out of his or her hiding places and hug everyone in sheer ecstasy. It is a practiced art.

-Keep at the hugging till people are convinced that their efforts were well worth it.

-Look fondly at spouse- keep curses at low decibels.

-Pop more pills and stay cool. You have it coming next year too.

It's Pi's birthday next and I am in panic mode!!! HELP! I want to start a petition and stop this cruel practice so that the future generations will be spared. They might even build a pedestal for me and shower my feet with rose petals. But the thought of being considered a non-loving wife is clashing with my principles. I think that a party in Las Vegas will be great. Everyone can appear from the skies in hot air balloons and yell "SURPRISE!"

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