The Upside of Living on Your Own

 

It’s Sunday. I thought about having a shower at about one in the afternoon. I live on my own, and it’s great.

I went down to the super market to buy ice cream and thought ‘hey those bananas would probably be awesome in this here ice cream’. So I bought them also. Because I live on my own, it’s great. The vaguely disgusted, bitter faces of the other shoppers only proved that I was absolutely right to do this.

At about 4pm I was having a glass of wine and watching a movie on my laptop. Hey it’s my day off and I live on my own (which is great), what else should I have been doing?

I could go on… so I will! When I’m done writing this I might just play Xbox and call my parents for a chat. Oh and eat that ice cream with those bananas. On account of living alone. And that being great.

Some might be depressed on a Sunday on their own with nothing to do. Some people can’t stand their own company but that’s not something I ever really had an issue with. If I had nothing to do for the rest of life that would be kind of okay. I mean I might get a little cabin fever after, oh say, the third month? Something like that. You’ve got to have a goal right? Well that’s what I’m working towards, the point where I can legitimately do nothing and not feel guilty about it. Until then, Sundays can be my preview.

My family are across the world from me which means I have very few commitments when work ends. There’s always that little niggling voice right now that says I have no right to do nothing and I guess that won’t go away properly until I retire but I can suppress the voice pretty easily by doing whatever the hell I want. Months ago I wrote how I was drinking chocolate milk on my sofa while I typed simply because I damn well could. I have to stop and realise that back when I dreamed of being an adult and doing whatever I wanted this is what I saw. People don’t recognise golden ages when they live in them so I’m actively trying to do just that. My Sundays fly by because I enjoy them so much. I look around my flat with the half-vaccuumed carpet and the washing in the sink and I’m content, because really, who’s going to come round and scold me for it? No one. Because I live on my own and as I have mentioned above, that is great.

Living on you own means a certain freedom that doesn’t get as much coverage as the depressing parts of living alone. Those bits get played up on TV and in movies for comedy value constantly. So much so that we associate dicking around the house doing next to sweet FA with failure. Because our lives aren’t a perfect replica of something like The OC (or, god help us, Entourage) we feel we messed up when not all our moments are filled with the most exciting sounding things possible. Go to Facebook and tell me how many of your friends are posting things about how ‘awesome’ or ‘lovely’ their weekends have been so far. (If you’re really unlucky the phrase ‘good times’ or anything ‘times’ will outnumber the amount of properly constructed sentences but that’s a different rant.) You won’t read many posts reveling in the fact that their day started at about five in the afternoon for no apparent reason and then after that they didn’t feel like eating so they maybe brewed up some suspect smelling bachelor chow and never left the house. That would not be ‘good times’ whatever the fuck that might mean this week (sorry, I said different rant).

If you’re familiar with the BBC’s Miranda you might recognise this living on your own trope. Even the most glowing reviews of her show talk about how she’s a failure. A happy failure but they are careful to point that out. For her part the (always funny) segments of her amusing herself in her flat are moments of loneliness mined for humour. Do we laugh because we want to distance ourselves from how weird Miranda is for those moments? Or do we laugh because they are goofy, quirkily written pieces of physical comedy? For me it’s certainly the latter because I see nothing wrong with it. Some are quick to stroke their beards over the more-more-than-semi-biographical content but personally I see those scenes where she conducts an orchestra made of fruit as some of the funniest parts of the show. Here some best bits with a little of what I was banging on about in there somewhere.

We should all be so lucky to enjoy our own company like that. Don’t go out this weekend, stay in and watch a crappy movie and eat too much and go to bed fat and happy. Don’t worry about how your time off should look to all your friends. You don’t have to be having ‘experiences’ every second of the day and desperately thrusting the pictures in everyone’s faces to prove it. It’s totally okay to sit in your pants and do what you like for a day. If you don’t live on your own but plan on doing so one day you will be able to do all this whenever you chose to. If you do live on your own and you aren’t taking advantage of this time by eating ice cream and drinking chocolate milk because you can, I can confirm you are doing it wrong.

I wrote a blog about being lazy and loving it. Because I live on my own and it’s great.

DH.

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