You try to talk to your friend whose birthday it is for two reasons: i. they’re the only person you know here and you desperately hate talking to new people; and ii. you figure if you talk to them – make nice, bit of chat, have exactly one drink with them, do your bit – they won’t notice when you slip out early after exactly one hour of party attendance because they’ll be too busy flitting around talking to everyone else here, so you can get away with leaving before 6 o’clock – but oh no, they’re talking to a woman who has her hands nervously knotted together and a big fragile cardigan on, and just as you go to say hi they scream “HI!” and introduce you and foist her onto you, and so now you’re staring at your drink and staring at this work colleague friend no one wants here, and you find yourself saying it, even though you don’t care, you find yourself saying, like:
“So,” you say. “What do— uh. How–how do you know… Alex?”
They tell you and it’s really boring. An eternity has passed. You check the time on your phone. You’ve been here two minutes.
“What do, um. What’s it you do, sorry?”
God, they tell you. You thought the last answer was boring but: holy fucking shit, man.
“Ah, I’ve got to— that’s great, but I’ve just got to go to the bathroom,” you say. “Sorry! Aha. If I could just—“ – there is this whole extended scene where you try to squeeze past them but they are really not moving as much as any fucking normal fucking person would fucking move to get out of the wa—