I know I’m probably alone in thinking so, but I think being the third wheel can be kind of awesome. For those who may not know, ‘third wheel’ refers to the extra person on a date, usually with a couple or two people meeting for the first time. Third wheeling is usually viewed as pathetic by onlookers and annoying by the third party themselves but it doesn’t have to be that way! I present to you a short list of The Pros of Third Wheeling:
At the movies:
I like a date at the movies just as much as the next guy but there’s nothing I hate more than someone trying to suck my face off in the theatre. The most affection I can appreciate during a movie is, like, maaaybe having the arm rest lifted so we can cuddle. But seriously, I’m trying to pay attention. Do you know how much it costs to see a movie these days? So while your amigos are having the most passionate — and probably disturbing — match of tonsil tennis, you can actually leave the theatre knowing what Gone Girl was about.
At a restaurant:
Especially on a first date, people usually try very hard to impress each other. This usually means presenting a very carefully curated version of who they really are. Eating is one activity that I personally don’t enjoy doing in front of people I don’t know very well, much less when I’m supposed to be on my most impressive behavior. I hoard food in my face. There’s absolutely nothing elegant about eating anything worth eating so I’ll usually avoid eating on a date — unless the date is not mine. In that case, I’ll have the fattest, sauciest, sloppiest meal on the menu please!
At a bar/club:
While your friend is busy trying to get to know their new friend, whether that’s through awkward ass small talk or making out in a dark corner, you’re pretty much left to your own devices. This is kind of the perfect scenario though because you’re in a position to get so drunk that you don’t even have to remember that you’re only there for decoration. Also, you’re free to pull one of these
This GIF had me laughing for an hour. Maybe that’s why I don’t go on many dates of my own…
Now obviously third wheeling can’t always be fun. These are extremely specific, situational examples for a reason- I like to focus on the positive. Or, at the very least, the possibility of a positive. I think if you automatically view something as a waste of your time — even if it kind of really is — you’re setting yourself up for a (more) miserable time. And of course you could just say no right off the bat, but don’t you know what it means to take one for the team? Don’t be a dick. Put on your Big Person pants and do your friend a solid. I’ve pulled the third wheel card so many times that I’ve lost count. My reasons were always more based on the fact that I can be a little bit off putting at times so having one of my people around helps. They can give me that knowing look that tells me I’m swearing too much and/or have a pizza sauce mustache going on. Some people are just really shy and have a hard time being comfortable around new people so having their buddies around acts as a security blanket of sorts. After all, isn’t that what friends are for?
Got a question for Celina? Need some advice or a wake-up call (metaphorically speaking, that is), contact Celina at firstname.lastname@example.org