Erma Bombeck Has Nothing To Fear
Whenever I throw a holiday party I greet my guests at the door, express sincere happiness at their arrival, then lie to them. "Please excuse the mess," I say, making a vague gesture to encompass the house I'd been cleaning frantically all the previous week. "You know how hectic holidays are."
Technically speaking, this is not a lie but two completely unrelated sentences that just happen to be close together. If people mistakenly assume a connection — that the holidays rather than my own bad habits are responsible for any lapse in neatness standards — well, I never say anything because a good hostess knows it's rude to contradict guests, especially when they're just arriving at your party.