Sherman Ave's Guide to Staying In
If the movies have taught me one thing about college, it’s that the parties are like the hordes of mole people living in our sewer systems: wet, wild, and out-of-control. As a suburban kid whose greatest exposure to partying in high school was attending a local democratic caucus with her mother, I still remember the magical first time I drank warm keg beer in a frat house, and thought to myself, “Yes, I am living the dream,” which slurred aloud sounded something like, “WOooOOoOOOOOooo!” But you know what’s even better than cramming into a sweaty basement filled with 50 strangers, screaming “So what’s your major?” over the sound Top 40 electro-remixes, and chugging cat-piss jungle juice? Fucking not doing any of those things.
Now, I’m no stranger to throwing down. I’ll still spend $10 to go to a derelict bar where all I do upon arrival is wander around aimlessly trying to get home. Perhaps it’s a realization that can only be catalyzed by three years of higher education, but sometimes, staying in is way more fun than going out. Here’s how to do it right:
Hidden somewhere in your closet is a torture device that even the sickest war criminals do not hesitate to call “unethical”: a pair of killer 4-inch heels (or substitute for the male equivalent). Toss these aside, light them on fire. You will no longer be in need of those feet murdering, tripping machines. Find your ugliest, oldest t-shirt and a pair of sweats. Ideally, these are the sweatpants you never changed out of from the night before and have been lounging around the house in all day. All clothing items should be paradoxically loose, yet molded to the shape of your body from over-wear for maximum comfort. Let your belly spill out, no sucking in allowed.
Shortly after I discovered the joys of staying in, I made an equally as shocking discovery: alcohol can be consumed in moderate quantities that don’t cause you to make a total ass of yourself and puke electric blue vomit in the frat quad bushes. Hell, alcohol can be used for purposes beyond serving as vehicle to get fucked up—it can actually be savored. No more beer out of cans or wine out of bags. From now on, you only drink out of glassware because you deserve the best. Mix a fancy cocktail if it pleases you. You’re an adult now. Satisfy your mature palette. Get a dank buzz.
Just because you’re not partying doesn’t mean you have to do nothing (unless you want to do nothing, which is an acceptable activity). There are plenty of things to keep you busy when staying in. You can watch Netflix. You can watch HBOGo. You can watch Hulu. Uh. You can eat stuff. The options are limitless. Just do not say you’re doing homework or I will dedicate the rest of my days to erasing your entire bloodline.
- Company…? (Optional)
Okay, you’ve mastered the first three steps of staying in. Sweats, drinks, TV? Easy. Now we come to the most challenging aspect of planning your perfect evening: Ride solo or call up the crew?
Friends can certainly bring a slew of positives to the evening. You’ll have people to engage in conversation, someone to perform the Heimlich should you choke on your popcorn, your laughs won’t echo hollowly as they would in an empty room. But before you invite people over, think through your decision carefully. Do you really want to listen to Erica talk about her latest boy drama ad nauseum? Are you prepared for Kevin to drink all your nice beer and argue about politics? Let’s face it, people are the worst. So when in doubt, just remember: staying in is about you.