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Tuesday, March 15, 2016

"Go... Sit... Stare" - A Singles' Guide to Weddings

Bachelors and bachelorettes, it's been far too long since I've given you any advice.

Sure, I got you through the holidays with my Singles' Holiday Guide and my instructions on writing the perfect solo Christmas letter.

And yep, I helped you through the New Year with my Tips for Finding Love in 2016.

But now the holidays are over and it's spring, that magical season when a young person's fancy turns to love! ...Not yours, of course. For one thing, you are not that young. Also, you are not in love. No, your fancy is currently occupied with other pressing matters, such as registries and RSVPs, because it's almost Wedding Season!

How are you going to conquer Wedding Season alone? This is far too big a question for me to answer without help, so I turned to my Facebook friends for their advice. In addition to some actual, proper advice (such as "Remember that it's not about you"), here are some of the quotes I gathered:
  • "Don't go."
  • "If you must go, it helps make you feel better if others know you're miserable. So, I think it's good to cry, make self-deprecating comments, and say things to the married/dating people like "you are so lucky to have each other". '
  • "Look hot."
  • "Make sure to dance with people that are either one third your age OR three times your age!"
  • "Give awkward hugs."
  • "Perfect a dance that you can teach to others."
  • "Bring a cat."

One guy said, "I just kind of go... sit... stare." He pointed out that this method has two advantages: It's really uncomfortable for him, and it's really uncomfortable for everyone else.

As tempting as that sounds, you may want some more specific advice, so here you go:

1) DO Drink.

The best thing a single person can do at a wedding is drink. No, not alcohol. (That's actually the worst thing. A little-known fact!)

You are going to drink a LOT, because you will be requiring a LOT of bathroom breaks. I recommend a minimum of five glasses of water, plus a few Shirley Temples to help you fit in at the kids' table, where you will probably be seated.

Once your bladder is sloshing with several gallons of non-alcoholic beverages, you will be ready to run frantically to the restroom anytime an unpleasant singleness moment arises. For example, you can escape:
  • The minute you hear the words "bouquet" and "toss" in the same sentence
  • Any time the DJ plays a song that's 100 beats per minute or less
  • When you're stuck between two strangers who are conversing over you as if you are not polishing off a salad in the two-foot space between them. 

The next tip is specific to the gentlemen.

2) DON'T be like this guy:

One time, I was sitting with some friends at a reception and an unattached groomsman came ambling over and invited one of us (any of us!) to dance. I volunteered.

As we arrived on the dance floor, he said, "I don't really know how to dance, so you'll have to lead."

No can do, Mr. Awkward Sweaty Groomsman Guy. NO CAN DO.

If your plan is to make the girl lead, I suggest that you first find out whether or not she went to a conservative Baptist high school that did not allow dancing, thus forever cementing her dance skills at the level of "Bunny Hop," and if indeed she did go to said high school, back slowly away.

Anyway, my Facebook friends were all in agreement on the following points:

3) DO eat cake.

4) But DON'T cry about it. Apparently, the acceptable times to cry at a wedding are as follows:
  • The ceremony
  • The speeches

Every other situation is off-limits for tears, including:
  • Eating cake
  • Eating your second piece of cake
  • Eating your third piece of cake

If you find yourself crying at a non-approved time, you must either put on your sunglasses or run to the restroom (see Point #1). No crying at the singles' table!

5) DO make jokes. If you can't cry, you might as well laugh.

One friend suggested that if you get a second piece of cake, you should claim that it's for your date, who "couldn't make it."

I think she's onto something. It's true that your date couldn't make it... TO YOUR LIFE.

Heh heh. Witty remarks like these are going to be essential for following the last piece of advice for attending weddings alone:

6) DO make friends. I'm not talking about making friends at the wedding. I'm talking about making friends before the wedding. Twenty years before, if possible.

Because the best way to enjoy a wedding solo is to be in the wedding. Think about it:
  • You will walk into the ceremony on the arm of a well-dressed person of the opposite gender
  • It's actually more convenient NOT to have your own date
  • You will have assigned seating at the best table in the venue
  • You will have many duties to keep you busy, thus giving you something to do other than visit the restroom
  • You will acquire many lovely professional photos of yourself in formalwear. Perfect for your online dating profile!

So dust off your jokes, my fellow singles, and get out there and make some friends. It's Wedding Season, and we got this. See you at the head table!

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