A table for just one sir? No one else is coming?
I’ve had to endure this line every so often when I arrive at a restaurant and have to be seated. On one hand, it’s almost always easy to seat a table for one – there’s bound to be a single seat tucked away, near the bar or even towards the back, where the bustle of the kitchen warps any sense of actually enjoying your meal. But on the other hand it gets irritating when you have to stare back at the maître d’ who’s looking at you with raised eyebrows as if a second person is going to materialize out of thin air.
For most of my adult life, I’ve been single. I’ve done the long distance relationship thing, I’ve had great relationships with people who’ve suddenly decided their true calling is halfway around the world, and I’ve had a few psycho cases along the way. But for most part, I’ve been rocking the singles boat. At parties, weddings, events, clubs – I’m usually descended upon like some kind of rare specimen, to be poked and prodded to no end. You’re still single? Oh you’ll meet someone great, don’t worry! The dialogue is always the same from my friends but it’s rarely convincing. But the funny thing about being single is that eventually, you just embrace it. And that’s when you truly start to enjoy your life.
Of course there’s always Grindr for those looking for a gentleman’s company, but you pretty much know what kind of company you’re going to get from there. I love it when I see guys who’ve written that they’re on there for ‘networking’. What the heck kind of networking can you do with a headless torso and a picture of your family jewels?
I have a fair amount of friends who start to get all mopey in the run up to Valentine’s Day. Something about it just turns them into bickering, bitter human beings, and to be honest it can be quite toxic. For these people, Valentine’s Day is a not-so-subtle reminder that they don’t have a ‘significant other’ in their lives, and for some reason this scares the living daylights out of them. For a long time, I was one of these people, always worrying about when I would meet this other person who would give me a reason for living, and who I could share every special moment with. Truth be told, it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Speak to any couple in private and they’ll confess that they often envy their single friends. Why? Because as single people, we write our own rules. We go where we want, when we want, and we go with whoever we want. There’s no obsessively texting someone that we’re going to be home late, or spending twenty minutes deciding which movie to go for or which place to order dinner from.
I choose to celebrate being single, and of course it’s taken me a while to get there. Sure, I could be a complete nutcase and join the various ‘Anti-Valentine’ brigades that seem to be popping up everywhere, or burn all memories of my exes in some kind of ritualistic dance, but neither of these are going to end well. Valentine’s Day is just like any other day for me – I see couples and people in relationships on any other day, so there’s nothing different this time around (except that flowers go up in price by 135%).
If you’re single on Valentine’s Day, don’t make a big deal about it. Life is meant for living, and right now sitting around worrying about when and where you’re going to meet a partner isn’t helping anyone, least of all you. Go out and enjoy your single life while it lasts – meet up with your other single friends and treat yourself to a night on the town, or just do things that make you feel good. In fact, why wait for just one particular day to treat yourself? Do it any day of the year, any time you feel like you just need to unwind, or blow off some steam, or just to remind yourself that there are greater things in life you should be worrying about than heart-shaped candy and roses.
So yes, I’ll take a table for one – just me and my fabulous self.