Chester typically starts climbing into bed, headbutting me, and licking my face at 4:30 every morning to get me to give me treats, and today was no exception. Once he ate his treats, he was on my stomach until my alarm went off at 5:30. Ever since I started writing my book, I’ve been getting up at 5:30 every morning to write. Nicole’s my kickass rock star editor, and she sent me Chapter 2 with a bunch of edits. I spent 50 minutes hitting “Accept” on her “Track Changes,” modifying some of her words, and making notes for new things to include. After the 50 minutes were up, I had my usual weekday breakfast of three eggs over easy, two slices of turkey bacon, and a clementine while I beta-read a chapter of my friend David’s memoir as well as a selection of a recent Amazon find, Kate Bolick’s Spinster. After this, it was off to work.
When I arrived, I graded a bunch of essays from my Composition 2 course. I’ve been theming these courses around Marriage and Singlehood for the past three semesters, and the first essays was an answer to the question, “Would You Rather Be Married or Single at the Age of 30?” The majority of the students argue for marriage, but the more thoughtful ones seem to gravitate toward singlehood, and I read one essay from a smart but reserved young man (not unlike myself) whose essays seemed to indicate a leaning toward aromanticism. I’m debating whether or not to bring that up to him, but I’m thinking he either knows or he probably should find that one out for himself, like I did.
On Fridays, my hours start at 9:30, and they were spent grading, putting my course materials up for next week’s class sessions, and writing my How to be Single and Happy course blog. In two hours, I saw two students: one who sought assistance for her topic proposal for my Composition 2 course, and another in my Technical Communication course who completely missed the point of the first assignment, a Routine/Positive Business Letter. I told him to come to my office, and I gave him a second try at it for reduced credit.
My hours ended at 11:30, and it was lunchtime. Salmon salad and a bag of Skinny Pop, followed by a quick power snooze at my desk. 12:30 came around, and normally, I teach afternoon classes, but our school was having a conference our students were required to attend. I had ushering duties for the 1:00 session, and I arrived early to help out. Friday afternoons are the most sparsely attended of classes, and this talk was no exception, so not much help was needed ushering. The moderator for the session announced that the remaining workshops would be cancelled for VD (how sweet!). Part of my job included turning away the students who had shown up for the 2:00 session, and some were annoyed at having come down for it. I was smart enough to announce it to my classes via Blackboard in order to fend off any anger to come on Monday.
Since I hadn’t counted on a session being cancelled and didn’t have a Plan B for my 2:00 class, I took the opportunity to duck out at 2. From there, I went to Planet Fitness for a light cardio/ab session (Fridays are typically my rest days from the gym, but I since I planned on cheating with wings and VD candy, I figure some sort of exercise was in order).
And then it was time for my Second Annual VD Solo Hooter’s Trip (that sounds so wrong). For the last two years, on Valentine’s Day, Hooter’s has a deal where if you bring in a picture of your ex and shred it, you get ten free boneless wings with the purchase of ten wings. DISCLAIMER: I don’t dig the concept behind Hooter’s. I think young women walking around in scantily clad outfits is degrading, and I’ve had better wings. That being said, I like their salute to singledom, and I will support them on that day. Plus, I like free food. After my workout, I pulled into a packed parking lot, and upon telling the hostess I was “Solo,” she enthusiastically belted, “Alright!” She seated me in a booth, and I saw a variety of diners. Some couples (as per my assumption of a man and a woman sitting together, although I could be wrong), some solo diners, and a group of women (all on their phones). When I ripped up my picture, I asked my waitress, Stasi, if I was the first one to do it. Apparently, seven of her other customers had, and other waitresses had several people do it. And it wasn’t even dark!
I heard about a special Burger King was offering where if you brought a box of stuff from a past relationship and gave it to them, you got a free burger. Sadly, the dude at the counter looked lost when I asked him, so I guess Newport News doesn’t participate in that one. Just urban, singles-friendly environments.
After a quick errand to stock up on Valentine’s Day treats for Chester and return some bicycle shorts, I went home and was greeting by Chester’s usual jumping on the leg. At that point, all human contact ceased (save for posting my blog on the CoSPers, Happy Singlehood, and A Single Serving Podcast).
The rest of the night revolved around finishing up Season 2 of Sex Education, a surprisingly singles-friendly, ace-friendly show for a setting in which everybody seems to be romancing or hooking up. But I’d been looking forward to Season 4 of Better Call Saul to come on Netflix for about a year and a half, and tonight was the night I’d kick off with it. And I got to enjoy those boneless wings, some pizza I had stored in the fridge, and some Valentine’s Day candy I had bought for me; I’m so glad they make packages for one. It shows the companies are starting to take singlehood seriously. Below are some pictures from my "enchanted evening":
Oh, and two side notes involving me spreading the pro-single message:
Valentine’s Day was a great day to spread that message.
On February 13, I was grocery shopping in Wal-Mart, and I saw a handful of dudes with flowers in their hands, and I thought about how liberating it was not to be under pressure to “perform” like that. When I was coupled on Valentine’s Day, the pressure was on to get the flowers, the candy, the evening out. I remember dating a lady named Tracy (name changed) and getting her a nice wine and cheese spread, and she got mad that she didn’t get flowers. Seriously, that’s the thing she looks at? And that’s what society buys into with respect to romance, relationships, and normalcy? I’d rather be abnormal and happy if that’s the definition we’re going by. Today’s social media feeds were a nice mix of seemingly happy couples and pro-single postings, but would I rather look good for strangers on social media, or would I rather be relaxed? To me, the answer is pretty damn obvious.
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.