Netflix & Chill. Oh how you've revolutionised the way men (and women) now see a date which is clearly meant to facilitate an ulterior motive. And one in which the intention is definitely not to watch Netflix and chill.
However, what happens when you're genuinely really wanting to just...watch Netflix & Chill with him? Do we even know what it means to do this anymore without cringe memories of pretending to watch a film while taking sideways glances at the man-friend sitting closer than is necessary on the sofa?
Firstly lets look at how Netflix & Chill comes about. And no, I'm not talking the birds and the bees. We all know about that already (or I do at least, my child is proof of that!) Netflix & Chill comes about when two people like each other...bare with me, I know this is starting to sound like that massively awkward conversation that you have at 14 with your parents/mum/dad/sibling/friend... So anyway, two people who like each other - yes, they've dated. They've done the whole dress-up-show-up date, and now they're at that stage where quite frankly, after a long day at work, the last thing either wants to be doing is putting in an hours worth of effort to get dressed up to the nines, down a bottle of lucozade on the way and hope to hell the day of nightmare meetings isn't showing up in those massive bag-for-life grey shadows under their eyes. So Netflix & Chill affectively comes about when you've decided that as much as you like this person, they're going to have to see you at something other than your prestige, perfectly pruned self. Now ladies, for you, this may only be a teeny amount less than perfect, because quite honestly, we're still going to go through the whole 'getting ready' process. But probably a toned down version of it. But hey, it's a step towards getting comfortable around the man friend right?
So, you can't be bothered to go out, no matter how much you like this person. That's how Netflix & Chill comes about. It's all terribly romantic isn't it?
When he arrives, and you've done the greeting (kiss or no kiss depending how long things have been going) then the Netflix & Chill can begin. Secretly as you flick through the Netflix options, you're passing choices you know you'd have selected in an instant if he wasn't there - that latest episode of Once Upon A Time? You'd be watching that in a flash. That Hilary Duff teen-bopper chick flick you loved ten years ago? You'd be watching that and loving every guilty-pleasured moment of it. But no, you stifle your true watching pleasure in place of something you can both enjoy. There's that compromise thing that's kind of important. Damn you compromise.
So you settle on something with a bit of everything and you both know the chances are it's going to be mediocre. And more chances are that at least one of you has seen it before (admittedly or not) because quite honestly Netflix isn't the best place to watch the 'latest' releases - know what I mean?
Then there's snack time. Oh God, the snacks! You practically salivate down your chin at the thought of all the snacks you'd be consuming if you didn't have this 'guest' (or 'imposer' now you're really aware of how un-Netflix & Chill this really is.) If he's a gentleman he may have bought snacks, maybe popcorn, maybe chocolates or sweets. You may even be due to get a cheeky take away...but no matter what the food source, you won't devour your usual amount. You'll put yourself on 'polite girl' measures. Meaning you half starve yourself and drool over the leftover that "You're too full for". You'll also potentially nip to the kitchen and stuff your face while he nips to the loo. Good girl.
The drinks. If he's a real brownie point earner, he's bought wine. This can be dangerous as you try to dull the voice of bitterness that may creep up. No matter how much you like him, he's stopped you watching Hilary Duff, you can't eat your fill of bad food to the point you carry a food baby that resembles the second or third trimester AND you'd way rather be wearing your trackies with bunhead instead of the 'loose curls, I've made no effort, but took ages' look. So in a bid to calm your inner bitter voice, you'll probably drink a bit too much. Then you get the added bonus of a hangover the next day. Brill.
So, then there's proximity, affection and interaction. This dude is likely to be hot, good company and someone you're at least starting to get the feels for. Otherwise you're unlike to have him sitting on your sofa when you could be enjoying this AND painting your toenails if you were alone. So the question of proximity is one that puts you on edge. How close do you sit? Do you put a hand on his leg, do you hold hands cinema-style? Quite frankly, all you want to be doing is slobbing over the cushions without a mere thought for ladylike posture. But no. Your guest's presence means you sit like a timid animal and steal sideways glances when you feel he's not looking and feel your cheek bare the burn of his stolen glance too. It's all very un-relaxed for the 'chill' part of Netflix & Chill.
Then there's the expectation. Dudes do not expect to come over for Netflix & Chill and leave empty handed. No matter what they say, they want the goods. They haven't just sat through the worst faux action film in the history of man just to get a kiss on the cheek, a pat on the head and a good will on their way. No, they want the goodies. That expectation can be awkward because sometimes you genuinely won't be planning to put out. Or sometimes the knowledge that your freshly made bed is upstairs just waiting is too much for you, not vice versa...whatever the sitch, the struggle is real my friends...to Netflix & Chill or to not Netflix & Chill...that is the question.
Quite frankly it's all just...hard work, isn't it?
I'd rather Netflix & Chill on my own! I'd rather slob about in my pjs with my hoody on, my hair up, my make-up removed and stuff my face with all the food I want AND not feel embarrassed if my socks have a hole in them (they don't, but i'm generalising.) Plus, I want to watch my shows, I don't want to feel like I can't just change my mind and fall asleep on the sofa without it being the rudest thing ever. Dammit, it's my house and I like Netflix & Chill ON MY OWN! Movie night for one please.
So thanks whoever invented the whole 'Netflix & Chill' thing, you've killed my favourite date night with me, myself and I.