I admit that it can be cool to have a significant other/partner in crime/reliable brunch buddy. It’s nice to walk down the street hand-in-hand with your One True Love, pause for some light PDA in front of store windows, and experience the world through two sets of eyes. Being in a committed relationship can be many great things: romantic, fulfilling, spontaneous, selfless, practical. It can also be a whole lot of hassle with significant opportunity for disappointment.
I’m not saying you shouldn’t play house (and split rent) with a nice lady friend or gentleman caller and I don’t mean to imply that happiness and commitment are mutually exclusive — I’m simply saying there are other things considerably more appealing to the selfish 20-something’s sensibilities. One day, we’ll settle down, sign up for the many (tax) benefits of monogamous bliss, and ditch the solitary and often futile pursuit of happiness. Today is probably not that day.
In the meantime, here are a few things you should want more than a significant other:
1. The Perfect Cup of Coffee.
2. The ability to leave — a town, a job, a life phase — at the drop of a hat and not feel like you’re leaving anyone behind in the process.
3. A passport filled with stamps from exotic locations and memories of months spent traveling and discovering the world alone.
4. Residence in a city where Seamless is available to cater to your every dietary whim.
5. A fulfilling job with a stable income and a bank account balance that doesn’t make you weak in the knees.
6. Internet notoriety and a small but loyal fan base.
7. Accountability to self and only self. (Answering for your actions and caring for someone else’s heart is hard. Save that shit for your 30s.)
8. A Metrocard preprogrammed with infinite funds.
9. Realistic life goals and the freedom to do whatever it takes to attain them.
10. Privacy to belt “Total Eclipse of the Heart” over a cheap glass of wine on a Saturday night without fear of ridicule/obligation to be somewhere else with someone else.
11. The knowledge that you can do it on you own, pay your bills, take care of yourself physically and emotionally without relying on another person.
12. A rent controlled apartment in the neighborhood of your choice and a quirky group of girlfriends who will always meet you for a cocktail regardless of their busy schedules.
13. A job that challenges you, but also provides moments of self-fulfillment and a few laughs along the way.
14. Unbreakable confidence and steadfast self-worth.
15. Time and space to learn your own needs and articulate your desires without the pressure or necessity of considering another person’s feelings.
16. A life-sized Mario Kart track complete with lava jumps and cars that spit out turtle shells and banana peels.
17. Mature, loving, and mutually supportive relationships with your parents and siblings.
18. For Leo to finally win his Oscar.
19. A solid kick in the ass that will remind you that one day, most of these things won’t matter because all you’ll want is the love of your life and a body in your bed.