Single Life: The Pros And Cons
There is a lot to be said for being single. I am a real canvasser for single life. If being single were a campaign, I would be the Moira Stuart of the drive. I would talk to camera with a stern expression, whilst wearing a terrible suit in a primary shade. “BEING SINGLE DOESN’T HAVE TO BE TAXING,” I’d bellow with conviction.
First of all, there’s the bed thing. The first few nights after breaking up with my ex boyfriend, the absence of his warm body lying next to me was as tangible and painful as a lost limb. But then one night as I tried to doze off, I accidentally stretched out to his side. And it suddenly dawned on me — I HAVE A WHOLE BED. I have vast stretches of untouched, empty sheet as cool and clean as a glacier right next to me! And it’s been there all this time! Just waiting for me to roll myself around in like a cocker spaniel in the snow. I can stretch my body out as far and wide as I like and ooh I can swoosh my limbs around like a snow angel and would you LOOK at all these spare pillows! The realisation that you have a whole bed is a triumphant moment for a single person and a thrill that I never grow tired of. In fact, I now sleep diagonally nearly every night, a luxurious symbol of the opportunities for selfishness that come with being on your own.
Then there’s not having to answer to anyone. That’s pretty great. You can stay out until five AM. You can turn off your phone for the weekend. You can dance on tables. You can spend whole hours in the bath before you head out. You can stay in the office working until you’re the last one there. You can go away whenever you like. You can see the films you really want to see at the cinema. You can order all the extra chilies and anchovies and olives you want on your pizza. You can focus on your set of friends and all their birthdays instead of a whole other set of friends and their birthdays. You can flirt with the barman. You can flirt with the bouncer. In fact, you can line up the entire staff of every Pitcher and Piano in the country and flirt with every single one of them without anyone rolling their eyes and hissing at you that you’re showing them up.
Being single is a real gift, in truth. And we should be conscious to make the most of it before we all fall in love again. It washes your life with an electrifying shade of possibility. The possibility that each day could end wherever you want it to. No ties. No commitments. It’s just you and your hot date with the big, bad, sexy world.
That said, there is one downside to all this. Sundays.
Now, there are no two ways about it. Sundays were made for couples. They were designed for activities in pairs. If Monday’s child is full of grace, Sunday’s child is full of post-coital glow and artisan pastries. Sundays are like the reward couples get at the end of the week for doing their very best to co-exist. It’s a day for walking around naked and breakfast in the afternoon and limbs tangled up in a tiny shower together. The plight of the sex-less Sunday has to be the only downside to being single. In fact, I don’t even know how to fill them anymore. There are only so many chickens to roast and ovens to clean and walks to be had before the elephant in the room stampedes towards you trumpeting: YOU’VE RUN OUT OF STUFF TO CLEAN. WHY AREN’T YOU HAVING ANY SEX TODAY?
It’s the only day that I tend to feel restless. Like something is missing. I know I don’t want a relationship — but if I could just have one for that one day of the week, I’m sure I’d feel replete.
So here’s what I say — this Sunday morning, all of us single people gather in one place. A bit like a flash mob. (Whatever happened to those? It seemed to die in the late noughties. What happened to all those people who spent their free time doing the Macerena in the Windsor branch of DFS? What are they doing at the weekends now? Anyway, they’re invited, too). And we all pair off and we spend the day together. Some of us might go browsing for second-hand furniture. Some of us might spend all afternoon arguing about the Middle East. Some of us will sit in the pub swapping supplements squeaking “are you done with that, babe? Oh no, you read Culture first, babe” and kissing each others little noses. But there’s one rule — we’ll all go home and have one great, big, long, headboard-banging, earth-shaking fuck. Then we’ll go to sleep and wake up on Monday morning, go our separate ways and get on with our lives. Independent. Happy. With endless oceans of lovely, free bed to swim in.