Words of Wisdom

So many cocktail parties are less than festive that a few simple rules may be valuable. The room should not be crowded with too many guests. The host should have plenty of ice. He should not try to offer more than three kinds of drinks without a professional bartender. There should be plenty of food stashed away in case the guests turn out to be voracious. There should be spare glasses. And the host himself should be abstemious and not ply his guests beyond reason.

These words of wisdom caught my eye last night as we toured the newly opened Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts on the University of Chicago campus.

Designed by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien this building serves as a unique place to house arts of all types, with rehearsal rooms living alongside a screening room, a workshop for building sets, event areas, and many other types of spaces. The 184,000 square foot interior consists of a low, two-story building and a highrise of eleven stories, and was a treat to view for a group of architecture enthusiasts. However, it was this piece of language that captured the imagination of our crowd the most. Afterall, who has not hosted their own little drinks soiree and grappled with pulling it together so that it appears seamless to guests. Everyone agreed that there was wisdom in these words, although abstemious raised a few eyebrows. Moderation yes, abstinence, not necessarily!

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One thought on “Words of Wisdom

  1. The words of wisdom reminded me of Johnathan Swift, who also did not seem to agree about abstinence:
    “Conversation is but carving;
    Carve for all, yourself is starving:
    Give no more to every guest,
    Than he’s able to digest;
    Give him always of the prime;
    And but little at a time.
    Carve to all but just enough:
    Let them neither starve nor stuff:
    And, that you may have your due,
    Let your neighbours carve for you.”

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