Party, Party

by Team Dinks on July 13, 2010 · 0 comments

london nightclub

For two weeks and change I ventured across the pond to Merry Ole England for travel and a good friend’s wedding.  For one night while I was in London, I was to meet the bachelor party at a very hip London nightclub.

It was two hours before arriving that I found out that we were expected to contribute around 200 pounds (around 350 dollars) for each person’s share of table service.

I balked.

Talk about peer pressure.

Two discussions came up when I let the group know there was no way I could afford a 350 dollar tab for one night at a posh club where we might see Rihanna.  One such discussion was something I encountered before in comments on my Washington Post piece on haggling.  One of the guys said, as I finished explaining that I had budgeted for the trip and was sticking to it,   “Hey, you make more than anyone here, so you should be spending it, we’re doing it.”  This is a tough situation when you are out with friends, do you stick to your budget or to the group?  My assessment was that the night would soon be out of control (money-wise) as the party prowled for women (something that, being married carried little appeal to me).

Later, as the bravado was building in the party, I was taken to task again for my frugal ways.  “Big deals happen in places like this man.  You’ve got to look like you belong here, so spend some cash.”  Stepping back to observe the club, I saw many groups of men positioned in the same similar manner watching the ladies (exceptionally beautiful ladies) dance and gyrate.  The only people I saw who looked like they belonged there were the bartenders.  The rest were posturing.

When it comes to friends and nights out and money, I find frequently that my frugal, budgeting approach is at odds with a seat-of-the-pants (or something else) financing. It’s difficult to tell your friends “No, I just don’t have the money.”  It is ever more difficult when they think you do.

That night, I just stepped back and took some hazing as I sipped on one of two scotch drinks (40 dollars).  I did not mind.  The groom to be was having a good time.  The rest of the part had objectives that were dramatically different than mine.  Planning for a night out wasn’t something they considered, whereas I had planned and budgeted my two week trip based on what I knew before going on it (Had I known about the proposed expense of the night a month, rather than two hours in advance, I could have adjusted my budget, but alas.   They way those in the party handle money, which I’ll be talking about in an upcoming column, is quite different than mine.

Explaining to friends or loved ones respectfully that “you’re on a budget” is not embarrassing.  It may be a little uncomfortable at the time.  However, what I do know is that a day or so later, one of the guys told me that he hadn’t wanted to spend so much in the club, but didn’t know how to say no.

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(Photo by Sailor Coruscant)

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