“What shall we do next week?” Ask me at the end of the date, and when I say yes, I mean it. But when he texted me the following Monday to ask when I was free, we quickly reached an impasse.
“I’m around Thursday?” I told him. “I can’t do it Thursday, but I’m around Friday?” he replied. Then, I said, “I can’t do it on Friday, but I can do it on Sunday?” And we went around like this until we realized: As long as he’s free, I’m busy. A few days later, I was chatting with my friend. Mom is on the phone. I told her about my difficult schedule and she sighed to let me know she thought my priorities were misplaced. “In my day, people would do anything to go on a date,” she said, then paused because she could tell she was annoying me. ‘But people weren’t that social back then. In’ 30s, the bar is closed: In the afternoon. People would have a few drinks after get off work and then go home.”
Strange to think about – the fact that people used to say, “I’ll come and have a drink,” and actually mean it. Things are very different now; our priorities have changed. Of course, aside from buying a house, having a baby, a flat tummy and a Dyson Airwrap, we’re still forced to think that love is the goal of life. At parties, family members come and rub your arms and say, “We need to find you a good man.” But I think many of us still don’t believe that’s the answer. What feels like a million books — including my own — now ends with the idea that the main love story is actually the one you share with your friends, not your romantic partner. Or, as Charlotte suggested to the other girls in Sex and the City : “Maybe Can we be everyone else’s soulmate? Then we can make men these great good people and play together.” Our profession is more important to us than ever. And, when we’re not working, we’re under pressure to make the most of every minute of our social lives—especially those of us who live in cities. Scrolling through Time Out , I often find myself feeling guilty about not getting all my work done. Why didn’t I get to the exhibition in a room full of tennis balls? How often can I get a table in a restaurant with Spanish and Japanese tapas? Getting married and moving to a nice suburb may once have been seen as a “victory”, but not anymore. The good life is the one where you are unfettered.
Of course I am. I was out with a friend the week before and he asked me what I did the night before and I told him the restaurant where I dined, the book launch I went to after, and the show I ended the night. He took out his phone and showed me A viral TikTok featuring this hipster guy in a crop top named Codey James talking all weekend. “I biked to the East Village to the dirt to have brunch with my coworkers and they had a great open space and it was lively so I went to Maiden Lane on Avenue B which is probably my favorite One of the places and then started heading to Bushwick to my friend Zetia’s popup and the vibe was /. Then Ali and I went to Jeff’s house party and he took us to the playhouse in the West Village…” It continued through more brunches, friends, tattoos, launches ,barbecue. The top comment reads: “I’m exhausted watching this.”