I’m going to be frank here, people. 2013 was not the best.
There was not a single event that personified the rottenness of the year. It was a combination of bad dates, bad professionalism, and a string of continuous letdowns.
With that said, I had a profound amount of time to reflect on what went wrong in 2013, and I realized that despite what I think is bad in my life, it is up to me to turn it around and make it better. I need a lesson in humility and learning to appreciate what I have.
But you know what is better than one lesson – 12 lessons. With that in mind, between now and Christmas, I am going to give you what I have learned over the past few months and how I’m going to do my best to make it all better.
The 12 Lessons of Christmas.
Unless any of you have acquired a boyfriend over the last 5 weeks (kudos if so!), I felt it appropriate to post a follow-up to In Preparation for Thanksgiving. I am returning to Chicago with a massive cold (not to worry though – the doctor just gave me a bunch of drugs so I should be singing Christmas carols minus the dripping nose in no time) and am fully prepped to answer the following annoying question:
“So, why are you still single?”
I have compiled the following potential responses:
- “I don’t know; maybe I should stop telling guys on a first date that I have a dating blog.” (just kidding…this is like a 6th date revelation)
- “I keep meeting these cute guys in Orange County but once I tell them that I voted for Obama, they run away.”
- “I’m on an airplane and/or in a different city every other weekend. Apparently, most men find this detrimental in dating a person. Me? I think it’s pretty f–king rad.”
- “I have no idea. Go get me my 5th glass of champagne and let’s sit down for the next 3 hours of this holiday party to talk through all my many single person issues. And no, we’re not spending one minute talking about you.”
- “I really am holding out for Ryan Gosling. He lives in LA; I live in LA. What – is this not realistic?”
- “BECAUSE BEING SINGLE IS AWESOME.” (True story. Thanks to my friend D. for that one)
Happy Holidays everybody! To the married folks – I enjoyed all the holiday cards (who doesn’t love snail mail??) and I hope there aren’t too many in-laws and screaming children this Christmas. To the single folks – I hope there are many ugly Christmas sweater parties and drunken makeouts heading your way.
Good news — I survived the holiday office party with no hangover, no having to talk to boring married couples (guess what – most were fun and doing shots at the bar!), and doing lots of this:
But perhaps the most exciting news of the weekend was that I bought my first car all on my own. As a single woman, this was more terrifying and overwhelming than navigating OkCupid.
The time had come to retire my 15-year-old Honda Accord as it leaked on me when it rained (and in one instance, leaked on one of my dates when he sat in the passenger seat) and the driver side window decided it didn’t want to open anymore. So I did months and months of online research and finally test drove a certified, pre-owned Sonata and fell in love.
But if there’s one thing I loathe in life, it is negotiating. Thank goodness I work in advertising and not litigation. I actually walked out of the dealership on Saturday because they were pressuring me far too much and gave me a crap offer on my (granted POS) Honda. I spent a night doing further research on Kelley Blue Book and talking with a friend who used to work at a dealership and who had all sorts of tips. The next day, I walked back into the Hyundai dealership much more confident and negotiated the price of my trade-in up and the price of the new car down. And now, I have a car with Bluetooth AND it doesn’t rain on me when it rains outside.
I learned a whole lot over those two days:
- Confidence is key. In life, on a date, in a car negotiation.
- Don’t be afraid to walk away from something if you feel overwhelmed or pressured. A night to sleep on it is sometimes all you need.
- Research, research, research. I spent months reading car reviews and talking to friends who owned cars I was interested in before I even test drove.
- Visit Carmax for a quote on your trade-in. I didn’t wind up using them but their quote gave me extra ammunition in negotiating the price of my trade-in.
- Don’t be afraid to ask a friend for advice.
By the way, some Los Angeleno jerk driver scratched the rear bumper on my 4th day of ownership and didn’t leave a note. Typical.
I for one love a holiday office party. As long as open bar is involved. My new company (I only started this job in July) is holding theirs on Friday and I have high hopes that the night will look something like this…
And not this…When I get home from my work holiday party after talking to married couples all night. (myfriendsaremarried)
(but I’m sure knowing my luck, it will be the latter)
P.S. If you thought this article was about HOW to navigate your office holiday party, I have no idea. My first full-time job out of college was working for a small start-up smack dab in the middle of the recession so I didn’t experience my first holiday party until age 27. So I haven’t been hit with the jaded boredom of these events that I think most people have acquired. I’ll leave the advice to the good people of Yahoo and GQ to help you out.