O come all ye singles, for it’s the most debaucherous time of the year! In the midst of the Siberia of fun that is Cuffing Season hides a fun-soaked Holiday Party oasis, a sliver of time to dunk your brain in complementary Veuve Cliquot and allow the Gods of Promiscuity to guide you towards Great Mistakes. No, I am not advocating promiscuity – I’m a ROLE MODEL, after all. (To my dog Chloe, at least.) I’m just stating the obvious fact that the holidays season has strong potential for excellent misadventures which, in turn, often result in outstanding Walks of Shame.
Often disregarded merely as an aftermath of a Great Mistake, the Walk of Shame is actually a delicate art form. If honed with care, it eventually allows you to shed all traces of embarrassment and own your 8am cat eye makeup and heels like you’re Adriana Lima and the world is your VS runway. Since it is my strong belief that no Walk of Shame is created equal, I have decided to compile some of my most notable morning after memories, along with those of my friends, for some imperative holiday inspiration.
I would also like to officially dedicate this post to Uber, committed to rescuing countless desperate women since 2009.
Long walk home. It was my first winter in Paris and I was hooking up with a man I did not get along with. He wouldn’t feed me anything other than the contents of his freezer and I, in turn, would not sleep with him, not as a form of revenge but simply because of my mounting frustration with his lack of chivalry. One night, in the midst of a particularly bad argument, he told me to get out of his apartment. Enraged, I stormed out in the freezing December cold with absolutely no geographic understanding of where I was (which I later found out had been the sketchiest part of the 11th Arrondissement). I was somehow able to flag down a taxi, only to be told that I could not pay with a card and that an extra ATM stop would cost me 5 Euros. I refused, the driver instructed me to I exit the taxi. After being kicked out by two Frenchmen in the course of one night, I ended up walking home alone for two hours, guided by nothing but a barely-functioning iPhone 3 and my intuition. – Marina (who else?)
Beach bonanza. One summer many moons ago, I met a guy at a Midsummer party at the Bowery Hotel. For some reason, he decided it was a great idea to accompany me back to South Brooklyn, where I was living with my parents. Not only did I have to sleep with him on the beach but he refused to leave in the morning, forcing me to play tour guide and show him around the neighborhood. The best part was introducing him to my mom when we bumped into her on the street! – Anonymous Russki
Island crawl. I met a French guy on a Tinder date in Paris and ended up attending the same wedding as him in Caracas, Spain. He was great on paper – titles, castles, the whole shebang. (He even spoke proper English!) After the wedding everybody went to the after party but the two of us stayed behind. We were walking by the water, the moon was shining, we were smoking a joint, life was wonderful… Until he leaned in to kiss me and slobbered all over my face, which killed it for me. My hotel was really far and there were no cabs running until 11am the following morning, so I had no choice but to stay over. Which was fine, except that I couldn’t sleep. After hours of tossing and turning, I got up and announced that I would be walking home. My titled prince bid me adieu and handed me a tiny stretchy t-shirt that fit me like a bodysuit, because he is French and I have boobs. And so I walked through the town in my gown and t-shirt and Chanel clogs, then hiked a mountain with my clogs in hand, then practically crawled alongside the freeway for the final stretch – only to arrive to the hotel to discover that my friends were still at the afterparty. Anonymous fancy friend #1
My name is Bond – Lady Bond. I was attending a wedding in Venice, which meant we had to take boats around everywhere. On the night of the wedding, I decided to stay with one of the groomsmen at his hotel. He was hot, I was caught up in the moment, all morning-after logistics were ignored. The following day he woke up early to catch his flight but encouraged me to stay and sleep in, which I did. I woke up thirty minutes before checkout, alone in the beautiful hotel room, with nothing to wear other than my Prada gown and stilettos from the night before. I descended to the lobby and ask the concierge to catch me a gondola, which I rode in a true Lady Bond moment, standing at the helm with the wind rippling through my hair. In retrospect, it was kind of beautiful. Anonymous fancy friend #2
Freshman fun. I decided to commemorate my senior year in college by hooking up with a freshman, which entailed spending the night in the freshmen dorm. My friends and I had installed the “Find my Friends” app on each other’s phones for safety measures. In the morning somebody must have checked it, because the next thing I know the screen shots of my geolocation in the freshman dorm was the hot topic of all our group chats. Oh, and I had to walk home in his freshman uniform for an extra dose of embarrassment! – Anonymous Gen Z friend who never knew life sans life-saving apps
Great escape. Years ago, I was working at a restaurant, and was hooking up with the head chef. Like many men (and women) of his métier, he drank A LOT. He got thoroughly sauced on a few bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and something else that wasn’t wine. Before we even got to actual sex, he had to get up to relieve his liver in the bathroom and passed out on the floor. Gross. This was before Uber was a thing, so after making sure he was breathing, I had to call a cab service and keep the operator on hold, while I went through his mail to figure out his address. When the cabbie arrived, he totally knew what was up, but unlike the Uber drivers of today, he was a professional and kept his mouth shut. – Julia Reiss
Pant-free nation. I was young and still living at home with my parents, who would generously loan me their car. One evening I drove out to “the city” to meet up with my latest beau, a musician who lived in a pigsty in Chinatown. I was wearing a Mary Kate Olsen-inspired outfit that consisted of tights, a tiny American Apparel miniskirt and a huge oversized plaid shirt. We drank, he drove to Chinatown, I slept over. The next morning, my American Apparel skirt was nowhere to be found. After a long fruitless search, I “borrowed” the musician’s sweater, wrapped it around my waist, and left. Outside, I discovered that the musician hadn’t turned off my car light and my battery was dead. So there I was, on Mulberry street, in nothing but a men’s button-down, tights and a sweater around my waist, begging a couple of random construction workers to jump-start my vehicle, which they did. God bless, and thank you for not judging. – Marina (Who else, really?!)