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Does it always have to be about oil and water, rubber and glue?

We are a relatively new couple in our friends' lives, both in our 40s, socially functional and generous, but not always gracious. Not always the best and most skilled hosts. We have very different kinds of friends who are unused to each other - some are dedicated to not getting along with each others' philosophies ad beliefs - and we'd like to know how to integrate everyone in our parties in the most fair ways with the best chance of getting folks to know and like each other. We'd like our guests to be comfortable and to want to come back and visit again. There is a fly in the ointment of communal friendship (and, frankly, we're afraid that some of our friends may come to shouting matches with each other) and I'm looking for good coping mechanisms and strategies for achieving this among potentially contentious friends. [more inside]
posted by kalessin on Dec 28, 2012 - 42 answers

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