1. Don’t give a lecture about the raw food diet. Remember the party invitation didn’t mention a one-hour instructional PowerPoint presentation by you.
2. Don’t make and bring multiple raw food dishes “for everyone.” Your host wants you to come to dinner—not replace it.
3. Do, however, bring one raw food dish to the party. Be prepared that everyone will want to know “what’s in it.” Don’t tell them it’s RAW beets, rhubarb and sprouted lentils. You’ll get anything, in reply, from Ooh! Yuck! to a dish unceremoniously dumped down your décolletage.
4. If you see uncle Jack fast-forking a plateful of turkey, don’t shoot him a look as if he’s just eaten the family pet.
5. When someone stares curiously at you while you’re munching on your cauliflower, just say Great chicken, eh? and pretend you’re pulling bones out of it.
6. Don’t talk about your healthy diet either gratuitously or constantly. It’s rarely a good opener and doesn’t quite fit into a conversation about model trains or the value of the Euro. And if you’re always going on about it, at every party, all the time, then everyone will have every right to think you only are what you eat!
7. Don’t look sad, bothered, irritated—especially not about any food situation. If someone asks Why so glum, chum? you’ll end up spilling the beans, and telling the whole sordid tale of your fatty collapse, raw food conversion, and your saintly life ever since. As a result you’ll be off the list for the hottest party invitations permanently.
8. When the dish you brought to the party is gone and there is nothing else for you to eat, be willing to invent excuses. Sure, they’re lies. But they’re pure, organically grown, pesticide-free, low-fat, high-fiber lies. While you don’t owe anyone an explanation for why you’re not eating turkey, or not eating at all, it’s still helpful to have something to respond with. Not hungry… got another party to go to later …I’m fasting for Saint Swithin’s Day…one’s as good as the next. Be creative. A favorite of mine: Oh, I pigged out yesterday, so I’m going light today.
9. Laugh. You’re at your prettiest, your handsomest when you smile and laugh. Doubly so when you laugh at yourself. So when cousin Joe the joker quips, Hey Mary—you’re having your one raw lentil seed again, go one better: Heavens, Joe, those things are fattening—I cut them in half now.
10. And if you fall off the raw food wagon at one of these parties, no need to weep or beat yourself up from guilt. There’s a new wagon pulling up every two minutes. Just make sure you get on it!