By Jamie Carson and Tristan Cross
House parties are, for the most part, good. That's the ShortList line, and if you don't like it, if you think "actually house parties are shit, let me stay in my own room all weekend surrounded by all my no friends silently passing the time till I get to go to work again on Monday morning," then you're going to get nothing out of this list, so click off now.
House parties have a lot of things going for them: they're free, for a start. And BYOB. And usually the best place to meet new people for long enough to have a good natter, but not so long that you have to spend your entire evening with them.
But then there are the dickheads, the bellends and the tossers. The insufferable, unbearable arseholes who force us to give our premature custom to Uber and decline all Facebook events for the next month, at least. Our comprehensive list of these people.
The Unsolicited DJ
Spot them hovering around the laptop like a fly to dung. They're twitching furiously, waiting for just the right moment to pounce, the exact lull in 'Hotline Bling' when it's excusable for them to take control of the aux. "What's your Wi-Fi? Got one song I'd like to play..." they says under the thin veneer of politeness. They've already scouted your password and are already busy loading their minimal Greco-jazz house playlist. Just put Smash Mouth on and step away from the Apple Mac, mate. We want to dance, not up your miserably low Soundcloud figures. TC/JC
The Booze Switcher
This dickhead won’t even ask for permission to raid your booze, and if he does, he asks having cracked it open and taken a deep, backwash heavy swig. "You don't mind if...?" "No, could you please put back that expensive but now spoiled bottle of deliciousness, please."
He's played a clever hand here. See, he's brought three cans of lukewarm Fosters in a plastic bag, left them on the side and pretended he's got them "mixed up" with your Jaeger. "Sorry mate!" he says, "Thought they were mine! Here, I'll give you one of these to make up for it..." JC
This guy's read 'The Game' so many times he can see it on the back of his eyelids. Catch him in the kitchen offering to 'fix' any girl who walks past a drink, wedging himself in between a couple and blocking the boyfriend from conversation with a strategically placed back, in the queue for the toilets 'negging' the captive audience about the size of their earlobes, in the garden offering to light everyone's cigarette. He doesn't even smoke. Somewhere out there, there's a register with this dude's name on it. TC
The Phantom Shitter
He’s scoffed too much pizza and a mincey dinner earlier (lasagne, most likely.) Now he doesn’t have any more room to drink, so he’ll pebble-dash your toilet for free and won’t even bother to double flush the clinging remnants. He’s the reason we can’t have nice things, and why Toilet Duck are absolutely raking it in. JC
"And what do you do?" They ask. "Uh-huh, uh-huh. And how is it? Where are they based? And, hope you don't mind if ask, how much are you on? Base." This is their entire evening, flitting from guest to guest, offering the conversational equivalent of filling in your LinkedIn profile. They're barely even listening to your answers, nodding and staring through you with narrowed eyes, sizing you up, evaluating whether they'll take your details and "touch base" with you in the morning. "And what about you?" you naively respond, having finished a spiel so boring you'd zoned out of your own chat.
This is all they wanted. "Oh? Me? I work as a junior intermediate strategy consultant in management and content development solutions." You've fucked it. You're going to hear about literally facet of their company - every board meeting, every blue-sky, every market competitor and every mid-to-longterm plan - from now until you feign a ruptured bladder so you can go home early. TC
The Guitar Player
Maybe the worst of them all. You didn't even know you owned a guitar. You'd totally forgotten about it. Yet somehow, this prick has sniffed out an old acoustic, retuned and is playing some utter tosh version of a Coldplay song.
He's even turned the music down for everyone to listen to him. He come in two flavours: white guy with dreads playing protest songs on a battered Epiphone with a pro-vegan sticker on it, or the long hair-blunt fringe lad whose favourite album is Oasis’s Morning Glory, and whose favourite song is Wonderwall and by God is he going to prove he can play it. Over and over again. JC
The Joke Rapper
"Put some Snoop Dogg on!" he yells. "Kanye! Outkast! Skepta!" You see, this guy's thing is he's painstakingly memorised a whole bunch of lyrics... and he's, wait for this, white. You see, he thinks it's a funny joke that he - a lad from a small village in Shropshire - raps, but he also wants to you to be impressed that he - a classically trained pianist - can rap.
"Oh! You've got an N64!" they exclaim, internally clapping their hands together. "Let's have a quick game! Go on!" Before you can say "uhhh, that might be a bit of a faff, actually..." they've somehow located all of the requisite cables and are already demanding someone "takes them on" at Mario Kart.
This wouldn't be so bad, but they've plugged everything in and annexed the living room, the only spot with any space in your house, and have cleared the entire dancefloor by turning up the telly so loud you can't hear Beyonce over the sounds of tinny explosions.
No One's Mate
At first, you don't bat an eyelid. You don't recognise this person, but it's a house party, there are loads of people you've never seen here before. Besides, they're so assured, they must be someone's mate. After a while, you can't help but notice that they keep appearing on the peripheries of every conversation, laughing a bit too hard at jokes they don't appear to fully understand. It's a few hours in now, and they won't leave you alone. You humoured them earlier and now they're following you around like a limpet.
You keep having to introduce them to other people. Everyone thinks they're your mate.
Then, as the night draws to a close, they violently projectile vomit over every single wall in the house, and people are giving you disapproving looks and telling you that your pal needs taking home. Somehow, you find yourself in the back of a cab with them, but now they can't remember where they live. Where did you come from? How did you get here? Who are you?
The Hanger On
You can only fully appreciate this breed of twat if you're a host. You spend the best part of midnight till 4 saying your farewells to the sensible friends who know the difference between 'welcome anytime' and 'yeah it's getting on a bit actually and I'd kind of like to clean up a bit, my mum's coming in the morning,' but the hanger on has already taken residence on your sofa.
They've drunk and taken too much of everything, they're desperately trying to engage everyone else around them in a conversation they've forgotten they'd started four or five times already and they've got this one last YouTube video they want you to put on. TC