When wintertime rolls around, it’s easy to feel like the only single person in the world. Couples are stumbling adorably in winter coats and scarves, chuckling over hot coffee and warming each others hands while we single folks are left to pile ourselves under books, Netflix, and the covers. It’s tough going solo when the temperatures drop – bars are emptier, going outside in general is less appealing, and the singletons you seek are likely hiding away in a burrow of sweaters and Seamless.com delivery orders. (And when you finally score a first date, you need all those sweaters to hide all those Seamless orders.)
But at least by the time you make it through all 18 stages, you’ll know you’re not alone.
1. It begins. The temperatures drop and you see couples everywhere you go.
2. When you complain about this to your friends, they shrug and say “it’s cuffing season.” You are not appeased.
3. That’s not helpful, so you ask for a friend to set you up.
4. You would have gone on that date with the set-up, but it was cold enough to freeze a turkey outside, so you said you were sick and ordered nachos to your front door.
5. Feeling guilty about ignoring the set-up, you try online dating. It’s like a bar, only you get to wear your Mickey Mouse sweatshirt and reindeer socks while marathoning an entire season of “Storage Wars.”
6. You pick a candidate for a date, wrap yourself in warm things, and trudge through wintry weather to the friendly neighborhood bar you suggested.
7. You hate every moment of the date.
8. Afterwards, you close your online dating account and curse the Gods because this definitely means you’ll be single forever.
9. To cheer yourself up, you throw a party with lots of alcohol and tell everyone to bring single people.
10. Everyone ignores you and brings his or her significant other.
11. So, you throw back a rum cider and try to make karaoke happen.
12. You end the evening by snuggling up … with some night cheese.
13. But all is not lost! You get invited to a work party.
14. Where you get saucy and hook up with cute person you don’t remember meeting ever, which means this is totally okay, right?
15. When you get lunch with friends the next day, all eyes are on you as you recount the debaucherous night.
16. And that being single means you don’t have to buy really extravagant Valentine’s Day presents for your significant other, unlike your coupled friends.
17. Which means you can buy really extravagant presents for yourself.
18. You end by celebrating said discovery by spending your evening with your two great loves: pizza and eating pizza.