The New York Times rang in the new year by giving a pity hug to all the sad singles facing yet another year alone. For too many unhitched partyers, "the minutes leading up to midnight will be agonizing as they ponder whom they'll be standing next to at the pucker-up moment." But, cheered the Times, fear not! Relief for sufferers of singlitis is but a mouse click away at SingleEdition.com, a "lifestyle destination that embraces the culture of single living." The rising number of single-person households, the fact that couples are marrying later in life and Hillary Clinton's attempt at targeting single female voters apparently point to one conclusion: "The trend toward singledom seems likely to continue."
Like a Web site on disaster preparedness, Single Edition dispenses tips on how to survive the solo revolution. For starters: Pack your freezer with Green Giant's "Just for One!" veggie servings, cozy up in front of your DVR for a solo moviethon (the "best way to spend time alone") and brew single cups of gourmet coffee with a special made-for-one coffee maker. And for those nights when you "want to invite that special someone up to your place for a drink without seeming too eager," the site recommends seduction by way of wine-flavored sorbets. Sadly, though, it neglects to address some pressing questions facing single ladies in particular. For instance: Are my 12 cats hurting my shot at finding true love?
I know. It's unkind to poke fun at a Web site offering salvation for people struggling with a single lifestyle. But I'm rankled by the bent toward single women (for instance, the site highlights the pink "portable therapy kit") and the tips on how to live without the stereotypical skills of a man (note the cutesy "My Money Matters" kit). These aren't tips on how to enjoy life without a significant other -- these are tips on how to function as an independent adult, which should apply whether one is single or not, right? The site seems like a treatment that reinforces a sense of disease. It screams: Learn to take care of yourself ... until you find someone to take care of you.