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Dec 31, 2009 07:10 AM

can anyone tell me about this dinner party activity??

I am planning a dinner party for Valentine's day... with 5 couples... i heard about an activity that sounds like a fun way to shake things up... but i can't remember the exact particulars... something like.. you choose 2 cards when you arrive and then later when dinner is served your two cards designate the silverware and plate you will be using... for instance you may get cards that have you eat your salad on a platter with only a knife... or your main course in a bowl with a spoon... does anyone have any info on how this is played? ... being middle aged i thought what fun it would be to have us step out of our comfort zones and maybe be able to discuss something other than golf... thanks for any help!

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  1. I've never heard of this and I am all for anything that moves the conversation away from golf, but I have the feeling that this might be a bit awkward unless plentiful alcohol is provided before the dinner. If I had to eat a salad with a knife in front of other dinner guests--even those I know reasonably well--I'd find it a bit off-putting. But if you'd like to ensure a better conversation mix, why not try Table Topics (there are several different kinds). I did this at my family's Christmas dinner last year and we loved it! Plus, my dad IS the kind of person who talks a lot about golf!

    Here's a link:

    1 Reply
    1. re: nofunlatte

      I can assure you, were I a guest at a home where this kind of activity accompanied dinner, it would be the very last time I ever accepted an invitation there. Even spewing football all night long would be preferable to that.

      Edited to add: I meant this as a reply to the OP. I just ended up clicking the wrong Reply button.

    2. Cards??? .....I thought that's what they made Bourbon, Scotch, and Vodka for!! LOL

      1. tell you what's fun but don't know if this game is available in the US but in the UK you can buy a boxed game called something like Murder at the Dinner Party. It comes with invitations telling the guest what character they are going to play, what to wear, what props to bring (nothing special maybe a pair of glasses, a watch, a scarf etc). The menu is even suggested in the box.
        You read the cards, act out the murder (one of the guests is murdered) then you all do a Sherlock Holmes type whodunnit.
        I have played it twice and it's a fun idea. There are about 6 different murder boxed sets.

        9 Replies
        1. re: smartie

          I have to be a spoil sport but "murder at the dinner party"- really? Solving a hypothetical violent crime over dinner? Somehow this is more acceptable than a "rape at the dinner party" theme? Much as I enjoy being a dinner guest as well as a host, I'd boycott any of this.

          1. re: janeh

            janeh, please lighten up. murder mystery dinners are well-known, and popularly enjoyed. the rape comparison is so off-base. maybe you've been watching too much law and order SVU.

            ps, it needn't be a "violent" murder..... ;-). think of all the poisonings miss marple has solved.

            1. re: alkapal

              Actually, I work with victims of violent crime and sometimes get a bit touchy about this stuff. My husband watches the crime shows, I watch the "Friends" reruns. And, yeah, I did grow up playing "Clue".

              1. re: janeh

                Good for you, janeh. You're doing great work.

          2. re: smartie

            Years ago I went to a couple of murder mystery dinners in a friend's home. I thought it was fun but totally distracted from the food. I could just have easily been eating chips and dip for all the focus on food. For me, dinner is one event and games (watching or playing) are another.

            1. re: c oliver

              As an avowed chowhound, I apologize for this in advance, but sometimes it's not the food that is the star of the show. I've had great evenings when the food was only ok, but the company or the activity was what made the evening.

              1. re: chicgail

                +1 chicgail, and not many people are a whole lot more enthusiastic about food than I am, either! :) No apologies necessary in my book.

                1. re: chicgail

                  I think the company should ALWAYS be the star of the show!!! But OP is talking about a Valentine's dinner party so I went in a different direction. But as someone here pointed out, she wasn't asking our opinion about whether or not but rather does anyone know how to play this game. So I'll offer MY apology for not honoring that.

              2. re: smartie

                I've gone to a party like this before and thoroughly enjoyed myself.

              3. I think this game is best played by the people remaining at a dinner party that you have just abruptly left. Leaving may be impolite, but think of it as a last chance to get off the Titanic before they remove the gangplank.

                2 Replies
                  1. re: wayne keyser

                    oh gosh, wayne keyser, you are spot on! LOL

                  2. I am middle-aged. I despise golf with a vengeance.

                    I would prefer to listen to someone recount their last three games, ball by ball, than play this game.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Harters

                      thanks for the honest input... possibly after further consideration this isn't a good idea.. i will try to find something less... uh.. unsettling!