How to throw a great party and save money

Marketplace Staff Jul 22, 2011

How to throw a great party and save money

Marketplace Staff Jul 22, 2011

Tess Vigeland: How ’bout with a weather forecast?

Robin Williams in “Good Morning, Vietnam”: Weather today? Hot! Tonight? Hot! Tomorrow? Hot! Hey, guess what big surprise tomorrow night? Hot!

That’s what I hear. And hot equals expensive, especially if you’re having a dinner party this weekend! I mean all that air conditioning and ice, which is why we have our friends from the Dinner Party Download with us today. Brendan Francis Newnam…

Brendan Newnam: Hey Tess.

Vigeland: Hey Rico Gagliano.

Rico Gagliano: Hey Tess. Expertly done, great segue.

Vigeland: Thank you so much. Gentlemen, I do have to ask: What qualifies you to broach the subject of hotness?

Gagliano: Well, we both hail from Pennsylvania, which is this time of year is not exactly known for coolness, let’s say.

Vigeland: Indeed.

Gagliano: My parents called me up today and it sounded like they were swimming under water and they were just standing outside. It’s very humid out there.

Vigeland: Well, maybe that’s the solution. Just have your dinner party underwater.

Newnam: That’s not a bad idea. You know, one of my dinner party tips when it’s hot is actually to go have your dinner party in a public building. So like, the library, the lobby of a courthouse.

Vigeland: Police station?

Newnam: Yeah, because air conditioning is expensive. Public buildings have to have air conditioning. So you just have people rendezvous, kind of like a flash mob, at the public library.

Gagliano: That might be a short lived picnic. What if those security cops come?

Newnam: I think you can buy them off.

Vigeland: They’ll already be there if you’re in the police station.

Newnam: That’s right.

Gagliano: That’s true. And mine is a little bit more complex and less elegant perhaps: What you do is you have people over and instead of running the air conditioning, you build what is called a “bubble house.” Have you ever heard of this?

Vigeland: No.

Gagliano: It’s something I used to do as a kid. For a large number of people, you want to get the biggest sheet that you can find. You tie one corner of it to a fan and then you weigh down the edges with books and then turn the fan on and it makes kind of like a cooled igloo. And maybe serve some iced beverages.

Newnam: I didn’t know you were raised in 1950s Brooklyn.

Everyone laughs.

Gagliano: My dad was brought up in ’40s Brooklyn. Maybe it filtered down. And also don’t go for — a lot of people will say, “Oh just make some gazpacho or something.” And nobody is satisfied by gazpacho in my experience.

Vigeland: No, you’re hungry like a half hour later.

Gagliano: Exactly.

Newnam: Which leads to another cold dinner party suggestion: Ceviche is actually a fantasy warm weather dish. Rico and I had lunch earlier this week at a Peruvian restaurant where we had ceviche. But here’s the cool part: It was served in an ice bowl.

Vigeland: That solves the problem that I was worried about. Because if you take it out of the refrigerator and in this weather, back east…

Gagliano: Instantaneously, it’s cooked.

Newnam: That’s right. And so you can eat the ceviche in this ice bowl and whatever’s still remaining, you can put a little gin and lime in there, and you’ve got a little cocktail!

Vigeland: Well, as long as you’ve got enough gin in it, it’s not gonna matter how hot it is, right?

Gagliano: That’s right, or frankly, what you had in it before. You’ll forget it immediately and you’ll think it was awesome.

Vigeland: Alright guys, stay cool.

Newnam: You too Tess. Thanks for inviting us.

Gagliano: Always, thanks.

Vigeland: It is my pleasure and actually, before you go, we usually do this at the end of the show, but you’ve done such a great job…

Newnam: You’re going to buy us a Roth IRA?

Gagliano: I’ve been waiting…

Vigeland: I’m gonna do you one better. Hang on a second.

Sound of pig squealing

Gagliano and Newnam: Oh my goodness, what’s going on?

Sound of coins jangling

Vigeland: You are this week’s winners of the Marketplace Money piggy bank!

Newnam: What? This is fantastic! Thank you. Can we make bacon out of it?

Gagliano: Plastic bacon.

Vigeland: Only if you serve it at your dinner party.

Newnam: Alright, we promise.

Vigeland: Thanks guys.

Gagliano and Newnam: Thank you.

Vigeland: And if you want to win your dinner party, do not miss their podcast, the Dinner Party Download.

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