[Author’s Note: As a professional single person, I thought it would be fun to start an occasional series focused around various aspects of riding solo. Before we delve into this, let it be known that I am in no way a lonely, sad person and most of this will be written in jest. So let’s have some fun, shall we?]
While meandering along the tranquil interstates during the Zen-inducing Memphis rush hour, a voice – well, three voices – enlightened my ears to a week of celebration previously unknown.
National Cancer Awareness Week? No. National Educators Week? Nope. National Read a Road Map Week? Nu uh.
The celebration focuses on embracing the wonders of aloneness: National Singles Week.
A switch was flipped.
I guess I always subconsciously knew I was single, but did I ever really know that I was single?
So why an entire week? Because one day to be fully aware of your singleness isn’t enough, YOU NEED SEVEN.
Let me lay down some history for you. Like all things unnecessary, this whole deal started in Ohio about 20 years ago. For years, the torch was passed from one group to another until, in 2001, the American Association for Single People (now known as the more politically correct Unmarried America) renewed the commitment to the uncommitted. The group fought to bring the week to center stage, but “unfortunately, these efforts were overshadowed by the tragic events of September 11, 2001.” Nice.
Unmarried America advocates for the rights of singles. And it’s about dadgum time. Since the dawn of time, singles have been oppressed and without basic freedoms. We don’t have to share our food, we don’t get to spend time with people we don’t care about, we don’t get to fight over the side of the bed and WE DON’T HAVE TO GO THROUGH A RIGOUROUS APPROVAL SYSTEM FOR EVERY DECISION WE MAKE.
Though we are single, we are human.
The numbers are against us. Scientific polling says so:
- There are 106 million unmarried adults in the United States.
- Singles constitute more than 44% of the adult population in the nation.
- About 44% of the nation’s workforce are unmarried employees
- The Census Bureau estimates that about 10% of adults will never marry.
- Single adults living alone comprise about 27% of the nation’s households.
- Another 13 million single adults are living with unmarried relatives.
- Singles tend to be renters rather than home owners. Of the nation’s 65 million owner-occupied units, 69% are occupied by married couples. Of the nation’s 34 million rental units, only 38% are occupied by married couples.
- In 1970, there was one unmarried couple for every 100 married couples in the nation.
- In 1995, there were seven unmarried couples for every 100 married couples in the nation.
So basically if you’re reading this and you’re alone, chances are you will always be alone. The numbers say so.
So go ahead and heat up that TV dinner for one, get real comfy in those sweatpants and hope that Netflix has recently updated their Instant selection.
Happy National Singles Week!