Friday, September 12, 2008

Miss Independent

I went to a movie on my own tonight. I know, it doesn't sound like something to be happy about, but I do feel pleased with myself for getting over my fear of looking like a friendless freak.

I couldn't rustle up anyone else who was available or interested in seeing a Jim Henson screening at ACMI with me, so decided I'd go anyway.

I picked a seat about half way along the second row from the back, but I admit I was relieved when a couple sat right next to me, without leaving the usual one-seat buffer, so I didn't look like a tiny lone girl island in the sea of couples. The guy even spoke to me, which was nice. And then I spotted other people who were alone and I felt fine.

Go me. I'm so independent.


I know the weather is generally a banal topic, but it's hard not to get excited about warmer weather after a long, chilly winter (chilly by Melbourne standards!). It reached 23 degrees (celsius) today, which is close to double some of our recent maximum temperatures. And it's going to be 25 tomorrow! Ahhhh, spring!

La la la

I walked through the park on my way home tonight. It was deserted but well lit by the big lights from the nearby sports stadium, so I walked along and sang out loud to the music on my iPod. (Still listening to the Juno soundtrack).


Selina said...

I was having a conversation with a friend todya about how awkard it feels to go to the cinema on your own. I've never done it so I think you're very brave.

Glee Girl said...

Hi Selina. I've had that conversation with some of my (single) frieds too. One goes to the cinema alone all the time and doesn't feel awkward at all. She works shift work, so I suppose sometimes she has little choice but to go solo. She has inspired me a little. I've only gone alone twice before but not recently. Why should I miss out on something I want to see because most of my friends have kids and can't go to the movies on impulse?

I'm not sure that I could take it to the next level and go out for dinner on my own though. At least at the movies, you're soon in the dark and no one can see you're alone. I suppose I could take a book with me and at least some of the other diners might think that I'm quirky and myterious...though most would probably feel sorry for me and assume I have no friends.

Tilly said...

I quite enjoy going to the cinema by myself. I used to go when I had a couple of hours to kill. I sometimes sit in restaurants by myself with a book - but usually only for lunch.
However, I am not comfortable sitting in bars or pubs alone. I sometimes even wait outside if the person i am meeting hasn't arrived yet...maybe i should try it sometime - get outside my comfort zone.
Ta for the inspiration.
I also loved your comment about singing in the park. My iPod ran out of batteries just as i was getting off the bus last night, so on my walk home i just quietly continued singing the song that was on.

Glee Girl said...

Yes! Sitting on your own in a pub/bar is awful. I always wait outside for friends too and I would never even think about contemplating going on my own for a drink. No one seems to raise an eyebrow if a guy goes to a bar on his own just for a quiet drink, but if a woman does it, most people think she's pitiful, or trying to pick up.

I think it's good to push yourself outside your social comfort zone, but I'll work on enjoying the cinema alone before I work up to waiting in bars on my own.

I like it when I hear people singing quietly to themselves when they're out and about, although I never do it when I'm in ear shot of others! I also like it when I see people smiling and laughing to themselves too.

Barbara Swafford said...

Hi Glee Girl,

I think it's great you went to the movies/cinema by yourself. Although movies theaters are often filled with couples, sometimes if we wait to find someone else to go with, we often see our life pass up by.

I remember the first time I went to restaurant by myself. I was on a business trip. I proudly walked into the restaurant, said "table for one", sat down and did a little bit of work while I waited for my food. It was a big turning point for me. I felt proud of myself for stepping out of my comfort zone, and have done it many times since.

Glee Girl said...

Hi Barbara, thanks for stopping by.

Yes, as a never-married 36 year old, I've slowly learnt you can't wait around for someone else to share the ride, or you'll miss out.

I'm definitely going to make more solo trips to the cinema and maybe I will take myself out to dinner. I imagine, like a lot of things that feel daunting at first, it does get easier the more you do it.

wwendy said...

WooHoo! to going to the movie. I don't even really manage to watch a DVD on my own at home, let alone go out to a movie.
My sis is listening to Juno in her car. Her boys think she's insane and describe her musical tastes as insane.
I often eat alone if I am in another city, but eating out here is something I'd only do as a social occasion. If I am hungry and home I'd open the fridge and the likelihood of me being alone, in the city and hungry (apart from at lunch) is very low. I'd feel seriously self conscious sitting in a pub or going to a nightclub on my own.

Victoria said...

I used to go out and drink alone often, back in the alcoholic daze of yore... I still dine alone on occasions, not so often since my food intolerances manifested themselves...

I often go to concerts, galleries or the cinema alone...doesn't bother me much. It's hard sometimes living in a small place to meet people of like-mind, so I've become used to flying solo :)

Glee Girl said...

Hi Wendy

Yes, I imagine with a brood of 4 it is hard to have some time alone to do much of anything!

And I do kinda see how your sister's kids think her taste in music is insane. The Juno soundtrack is quirky all right, and Kimya Dawson's songs are the quirkiest of the lot and on a whole other planet to what the average youngster listens to these days.

Glee Girl said...

Wow, you are Miss Super Independent, Victoria.

I do a lot of stuff on my own during the day on weekends and I love it. I've always been really happy doing my own thing in the daytime, but I feel awkward doing stuff on my own at night - Friday and Saturday nights especially, which are the traditional nights to catch up with friends or go out with your partner. Part of it is that I think they are pitying me and the other part is that, when I'm single, it makes me a little sad that I don't have someone special to accompany me.

But I am going to try not to care so much what people think and to get out and enjoy myself more on my own at night (except for bars!). Do you find that you are more likely to interact with strangers if you go somewhere alone?

Victoria said...

yes...especially when i travel alone (which is ALL THE TIME!!! pft!) travelling alone means you HAVE to interact with strangers...i used to hitch-hike around the UK frequently in my mis-spent youth, and learned to trust my instincts with people. it's never failed me yet, and i have met some awseome and amazingly interesting people over the years :)

Glee Girl said...

One of the reasons I am not well travelled is because I've never wanted to go it alone (and when I've been in a relationships, travelling wasn't on the radar for various reasons).

Clearly I have to stop being so cautious and just throw myself in at the deep end. And I should change the title of this post to Miss Just a Teeny Bit Independent!

I sometimes observe that my life provides few opportunities to meet people (OK, when I say 'people' I mean 'single men') and I think getting out and about more on my own would be a good way to change that.

Gillian said...

Well done miss is a big step going to the movies alone. Although I admit to going to a tiny theatre alone once to see a play I was studying at uni. I felt very nervous at first (everyone seemed lots younger than me and of course knew everyone else). Then a young couple said hi and commenced a conversation. When they realised I was alone they introduced me to heaps of people. So I guess I didn't end up alone after all.

However, it did help me to go out to other events alone - the ballet and big theatre productions. Sometimes not so daunting because there are so many people around you can't tell you're alone!

Victoria said...

it hasn't helped me meet men hahahha!

not in *that* way anyway ;)

friends, yes...eligible and suitable bachelors...i'm afraid not :(

doesn't stop me is for living. If i spent my life waiting for someone to do things with my story would be veeeeeery boring! I think you do a great job of pleasing yourself (interests/activities wise - not in the rude sense!!!) and after all that's what it's all about. If you meet someone who shares a lot of your interests etc then that to me is just an awesome bonus :)

airbabylonne said...

a solo trip to the cinemae has ALWAYS always been in my to-do list.

i dont think im ready.
im one of those who find themselves still clutching a mobile phone while walking to disperse any kind of aloneness feeling.

I always thought only content confident people can do it.
im still working myself up to that.
im getting there.

you definitely get 10 stars for braving it up.