There are two things that are good to know about me. First, I make friends everywhere I go, and second, I really love my day job. I love my day job so much that I work late some nights to get some extra time in on projects, as I was on this particular night when my Gmail dinked alerting me that I had an Evite to a party. I assumed it was from one of the kids’ friends’ mothers, because no one invites anyone to a third grader’s birthday party with a few fill in the blank packs of overly happy clown invitations stuffed into 22 backpacks anymore. Now we send them directly to the spam filters so that I have to be informed of the party on Saturday morning by a kid going “are we leaving for Kaydince’s party yet?” followed by me rushing to throw on real pants, haul ass to Target, spend too much money on a piece of crap toy, and spend four hours at a roller rink pretending to be the kind of mom who limits her kids’ sugar intake, “Ok, sweetheart, just ONE small cup of Sprite, one little treat once in a while at a party can’t hurt.” Inevitably the conversation breaks down into out-organicking the other parents. If your kid’s lunch gets packed with non-dairy, wheat-free, sugar-free, organic, free range yogurt, you win.
So when the Evite came into my inbox late that night, I ignored it. Then a few minutes later, it was followed by an email from a name I didn’t recognize, inviting me and a gentleman named Taylor to a beer tasting party. Taylor’s last name was the same as mine, and I quickly realized that there is another Candice S. who had a very similar email address to mine. Rather than reply with a generic “sorry, wrong number,” I took a break from the report I was writing to tell them how terribly sorry I was to have to miss the party (since it was 6 hours away from me in Atlanta).
“Hi Candice and Taylor,
It’s your across the street neighbor, Luke. I got your e-mails from Katie A. because I wanted to invite y’all to our annual Backyard Brews party. I’m sending y’all the evite with all the details, but I wanted to give you the heads up. Katie and Kyle will be here, so there will be someone you know here (just wanted to let you know). Hope all is well.
This gathering of yours incorporates two of my favorite things: beer and parties. I would be there in half a heartbeat if you actually were my across the street neighbor.
Unfortunately for me, my across the street neighbors are a sweet old retired chemist named Bill and his gossipy, sort of overly dramatic wife Marilyn. One time, my 11 year old son’s disc golf driver sailed into their yard and she came over 15 minutes later wringing her hands, worried that if her dog had been in the yard at the time, he might have gotten hit and suffered a concussion and asked that I please ask Dade to try not to throw the disk into her yard. After standing there for a moment to let the realization sink in that she was indeed not at all joking about the potential for canine brain injury, I apologized but told her that if Dade had better control over his throw, I wouldn’t keep kicking his butt at the disc golf course every weekend, so it wasn’t promising but I’d try and get him to be more careful anyway. Also she wears BRIGHT PURPLE Crocs to the grocery store which I simply cannot abide.
It sounds like it would be way more fun to be your neighbor instead. I don’t even think Bill and Marilyn drink beer. If I had to guess, she probably drinks pink wine out of a box, and he probably drinks Cheerwine while fantasizing about slipping just the teensiest, tiniest bit of arsenic into her Franzia before mowing the lawn. I know I would think about that a lot if I were Bill.
So it is with regret that I decline your invitation, but I encourage Taylor and the intended Candice S. to join you at the annual Backyard Brews party, because awesome neighbors don’t come along every day. When you are lucky enough to live across the street from them, you should take every opportunity to raise your solo cup and toast your good fortune. And maybe drink one for me. 🙂
Candice Devinney S.
“Let me start this email reply-all by saying that I have seen no less than 5,000 hilarious emails in my life. Between college and 7 years in the construction industry I feel privileged to have a network of friends that send incredibly witty emails.
I must admit, this is the funniest email I have ever seen.
FYI I have looped in the Twitter-verified “#actuallyintendedcandAceS.” into this epic email.
It is crazy to think that there is actually more than one Candace S.that exists in this world. After all, the name is pretty rare unless you watch ESPN.
I’m upset to hear that Candice cannot make it to the party. I’m also upset to hear that Marilyn doesn’t appreciate a good arm when she sees one. That kid could one day be an all-star. Let’s be honest…she’s lucky that he hasn’t lit a bag of poop on fire on her front porch. But there’s still time – he’s only 11 and one can only hope.
Luke, please accept this as our official rsvp to the party. And I also invite Candice S. to come to Atlanta for a frisbee-friendly environment. I also invite Bill to tag along so he can escape the prison in which he is currently trapped.
Thank you Candice for not simply filing this email but bringing a load of enjoyment to the group.
I hope you and Dade continue to push the boundaries of neighborhood disc golf.
And that’s the day I made friends in Atlanta by getting invited to their party by accident. I didn’t go, but it’s an annual party, and I totally still have the Evite with their address on it, so maybe one day I’ll road trip on down to crash that party.