The Single Self

Photography: Alex Chatelian | Vogue, 1970

Photography: Alex Chatelian | Vogue, 1970

I have always been able to lunch alone, sit at a cafe during the day or early evening at a bar and have a glass of wine with ease. Engaging in these acts during daylight hours brings a certain casualness to the affair of it all.

Most recently, and from time to time, I have found myself thoughtfully taking myself out for a night alone, sometimes it is sitting at a wine bar, other times it may be listening to a live musical performance, and I have to admit that it isn’t as easy as the above. At night people navigate through the city in groups, or in couples, whereas during the day, most of us are lone soldiers, diligently marching forward to the beat of our own routines and errand running drums.

I am noticing that the world makes it a little more uncomfortable for the single person to get comfortable at being single and out alone. There is a stigma that follows, one of loneliness, and perhaps if sitting at a bar, others may come to mind. Again, I cannot help but notice the differences between our N. American society and that of the European, where such an act mostly goes unnoticed by those participating and by those observing.

So I guess the more I do this, the more I get will comfortable with continuing to break social norms, (especially true for the female) and not thinking twice about the single-self date night. But until then, I literally have to mentally begin preparing myself for my night on the town first thing in the morning, reminding myself that it is in fact a casual affair, one where I get to be with myself in a different way, and I get to experience new places that my friends would never venture into.

The connection to the self and life really shifts when you start becoming a little braver then you once were. Some would even say, it sets off a chain reaction. -tM