As each year lived crashes like a wave onto the beaches of our youth, it scoops up granules of self-consciousness, the importance of shallow goals, and FOMO tendencies. True, along with each crashing, the sun also slowly sets on our youth or whatever, but I'd argue as a whole, aging is a good thing. We retire our party shoes from regular rotation, finally understanding and respecting that raging all the time is a weird, harmful attempt at extending our childhood. Each birthday celebrated (for most of us, anyway) grows ever more tame, yielding fewer hangovers in their wakes, but also fewer bouts of shame about spending the next day in bed with takeout. You feel more confident and secure in yourself, your relationships, your trajectory. It's pretty dope. Along with all these new adult feels and perspectives, the pressure to "go out" and "revel in youth" wanes. Staying in is not only finally available on the weekend night menu, it's the special. To be real, staying in is better than going out almost always.
And staying in, if we're honest, was ALWAYS better than going out. But when we're young, we're more inclined to do things that either we think we are supposed to do, or that we think will earn us the things we want, like fulfillment, acceptance, and love. With just a little age, you realize that you don't give a damn about what you're "supposed" to do with your life, and you no longer feel compelled to look outside of yourself for things like acceptance and love—or, at the very least, you realize that you'll never find them by running around dark city streets at 2AM in uncomfortable shoes.
I don't mean to insinuate you have to approach your mid- to late-20s before you're allowed to swap nights out pounding shots and pumping fists for a date with your couch and box of wine. You can start being A Person Who Stays In at any age. After even cursory meditation, the truth seems clear: going out sucks, staying in rules. Go ahead and unbutton that top button, grab a nice seltzer, and let's review the supporting facts about staying in:
You save money
The unfortunate reality of going out responsibly is that it's really expensive. When you don't care about pandering for free booze or driving drunk (both of which are very, very bad ideas), it doesn't cost so much. But thinking in such a way has a shelf life, y'all. Think instead about the price of an Uber combined with a bar tab and maybe cover admission. Even if you're ready to turn up, you can do so at home for much cheaper.
No pants required
If we wanna get real serious on the cost of going out, we could factor in other baseline costs like sweat-proof make-up, fancy Band-Aids that allow semi-comfortable wear of ~swanky shoes~, pants. But at home, you only face the judgement of your cat and menagerie of succulents. You don't have to wear constricting, stiff clothing. You don't even have to wear pants. Or underwear. Toss on a bad bitch robe (or don't! I don't know your life!) and feel complete.
No dish washing duty necessary on your night in, y'know.
I know I'm not alone when I say I'm a big fan at slamming can after can of La Croix or simply punishing a bottle of champers. All those little bubbles are too fun to suck down! However, they do pop up again—as less adorable burps. I'm talking like, Homer Simpson levels of burping bravado (at least, that's true of mine; apologies to my whole family). When you're couch-bound in the privacy of your own home, you have the major luxury of letting these bad boys rip and roar. Feel empowered by these belches! YOU ARE WOMAN, HEAR YOU BURP. (Related: You can also self-baptize with corn chip crumbs since you have no witnesses.)
You can multi-task
Guess what is horrible always? Cleaning your bathtub, making your bed with fresh sheets, attempting to properly clean a cast iron skillet. Guess what helps? Alcohol. If you're a little sauced and sick of being horizontal (LOL, OK), you can take that buzzy energy and apply it to tasks you should probably tackle anyway. That way you can chill while you kill (that to-do list). Just be careful if any of your to-do list items involve online purchases as neither Amazon nor Madewell provide a breathalyzer before check-out.
You can actually practice dancing
With no audience (save your stuffed animal collection), you can make a serious dent in owning your new dance routine.
Often it can be tricky talking a pizza joint into sending their cutest delivery boy over to some slammed club, but this is not an issue when requesting delivery to your home. You just might want to add pants before answering the door. Or maybe not. Choose your own adventure.
There's no bathroom line
I went out dancing for a friend's birthday at a pretty popular club this weekend. The room's capacity was nearly met at around 200. There was exactly one toilet. WHY. Even if you have roommates who also get down with the sloth lifestyle, that's around 198 less people you have to battle to win a normal amount of pee breaks (or more than normal, pending your seltzer/wine intake for the evening).
Most establishments don't allow pet companions
Real talk: More often than not, I'd most prefer to be hanging out with my cat.
There are fewer distractions
It's easy to get derailed while attempting to take on projects or finally sink into that novel during daylight hours. Weekend nights are prime for going about stuff you'd like to do anyway without bored friends at work incessantly GChatting you away from your goals (even if the goal is just a fresh DIY pedicure, that counts).
There are also fewer terrible people
Running into acquaintances you're not crazy about while out is the pits. At your own home, you're your own bouncer. No basic bitches allowed.
Screaming is optional
Especially as a short person, I find volume is one of the most obnoxious parts of going out. No one can ever hear me way down here, and I'll never be able to hear others way up there. Communication is challenging, but normal conversation is a totally reasonable option at home if you're coolin' with a pal or partner. Conversely, you may scream if you want to but you don't have to.
Parking isn't an issue
Park your ass on something fluffy and consider it done.
Same with seating
What isn't a seat?
You know your wine is legit
I don't know who comprises your squad, but at least in my experience, the consensus for the evening agenda usually doesn't involve a wine menu varying much from "red" to "white" to "umm..." When you're in charge of popping your own bottle (or cracking that box's noble nozzle), you know what's up. Bonus: no one said a coffee mug can't make a damn good wine container. OK, maybe someone did say that, but you're home and welp, f*ck it.
Sex in public isn't exactly legal
If you're staying in with a...ahem...Special Friend, you can get your swerve on without getting arrested. Because although dancing may be considered exercise, we all know sex is actually better for you.
You can also do...other possibly illegal things. If that's your thing. Just saying.
You don't have to worry about how to get home
Party 'til you drop—right into bed. Boom, perfecto. Staying in, FTW.
Images: David Urbanke/Flickr; Giphy (18)