Last year, I blogged about my activities for each day of this delightful week devoted to us singletons. This year, since I’m adjusting to a new job in a pandemic (and I spent most of my time inside), I’m just writing one blog posting.
I’ve recently moved to Washington, DC, a VERY singles-friendly environment. Sunday was the most interesting. I met up with a new friend, Joe, a singleton, and we checked out the memorial to recently deceased Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. The flowers and notes brought goosebumps to my skin.
Joe is an extrovert and highly knowledgeable in all things DC-related (I guess living year for a decade will do that), so he pointed out all the cool sights, such as The Library of Congress and Mitch McConnell’s house, which we saw two other people flip off.
The work week was action-packed, involving teaching and me getting to know my students. Some highlights: a presentation on low-stakes writing instruction for faculty in different disciplines, which was successful. I also got a nice email from one of the attendees, a psychology professor, who asked me to be a guest speaker on the topic of writing anxiety, my dissertation topic (which I revisited in planning for the presentation). And Ketaki and I exchanged correspondence on our upcoming Singles Studies Conference.
I’ve been doing some solo exploration of my city too (well, as much as could be done during the pandemic). I recently got a Capital Bikeshare membership, which only cost me $25 for the year thanks to my city employee discount, so I’m riding a few times a week. It’s quite the rush riding in city traffic.
Watching Premium Rush Saturday night indulged my fantasy about being a bike messenger (even though I could never weave through traffic like the people in that movie), which I followed with The Warriors, a guilty pleasure. While written, acted, and directed stiffly, I still enjoy those grungy New York City locales in that movie. I also rewatched the first season of Cobra Kai now that it’s on Netflix (even though I’m one of the few that watched it on YouTube Red) , that Karate Kid sequel that shows Daniel and Johnny as three-dimensional characters.
On the culinary front, I reheated some mac and cheese I had made the week before with some cut-up bratwurst for my Friday cheat. Saturday’s a fasting day, but I bought some romaine lettuce and a giant green pepper at the farmer’s market that takes place every Saturday morning less than a block from where I live. That pepper will get cut up with a remaining piece of bratwurst, both of which will be placed on a club roll, for my Sunday cheat.
For my Saturday cheat, I devoured a pair of crispy spring rolls and a chicken Banh Mi sandwich from Viet Chops, one of two Pho places within a half-mile radius of my domicile. Each week, I try a new restaurant. I start in Van Ness, my neighborhood, and work my way out. I also felt the need to get a pair of cupcakes from the Red Velvet Cupcakery, up on the DC/Chevy Chase border. I thought I could only get one, but that didn’t happen. Limiting to two is good for me. After dinner, I thought I’d only have the Southern Belle (ostensibly a red velvet cupcake), but after about an hour, I felt the Peanut Butter Cup calling my name. It went well with coffee. Ehhh, I’d be lifting weights and biking the next day.
Oh, and I got a ticket to see the Yonder Mountain String Band, the recap of which will go on my Not Enough Concerts blog. While the weather's still nice, I'd like to spend as much as time as possible outdoors before I essentially become a hermit this winter.
And, all the while, Chester was grabbing at my leg and saying, “It’s time to give me treats, human!” I did what the cat said.
Ziggin' Through the Zoo
Now that I’m in singles-friendly DC, where a number of us members of Community of Single People (CoSPers) are located, I can hang out with other happy singletons, and whenever I do, it’s going on the blog. Discussing policies and criticizing the media are fun and useful, but social interaction is important for me as well, and these days, well, I just prefer to do it with other happy singletons.
So I got up at 6:45 on Sunday morning to have a quick breakfast, shower, and walk to the National Zoo to meet Heather, who had come down from the Baltimore area. After some confusion involving where to meet, we got together in the panda section (she loves pandas!). A few weeks earlier, I had gotten together with a few other friends for the zoo, which was fun, but they didn’t quite have the passion for animals that Heather does, so that increased my enjoyment of the experience.
Among the things we watched included monkeys climbing across high-wires, wallabies being wallabies, a lion being a lion, cows being cows, and pandas between pandas. And Heather and I had some good conversation. I found out she was from New Jersey, which always brings me home. I love meeting people from the Northeast; I find there’s usually a psychic connection of some sort. We talked our jobs, politics, music, and life in general. And of course, our cats. Cat people are the best people ever! We pondered hopping the fences around the carousel so Heather could get a picture, but three would have been too complicated. But it did inspire a microfiction piece to come.
We broke from the zoo for a bit to get brunch at the Woodley Cafe (for me, it was second breakfast a la Pippin). Heather inspired me to order an omelette with garlic mashed potatoes in it, and I’m still thinking about it the next day. And it was there where she found out my real name (I have an alias on Facebook). And that’s very interesting in this era of social media how we can get to know each other without really needing to know the basics (I mean, Craig is just a name, really). And it inspired another microfiction piece to come.
Eventually, a group of us COSPers will get together. Stay tuned!
My name is Craig. I'm an educator, writer, and unapologetic singleton. When not reading, writing, or teaching, I enjoy hiking, running, watching movies, going to concerts, spending time with friends, and playing with my cat/son, Chester.