My friends, winter is coming.
Autumn’s leaves are almost gone and the pumpkins on your front porch are probably starting to get mushy. Temperatures are dropping and, thanks to the end of Daylight Savings Time, it’s basically pitch black outside by 5:15 p.m. Before we know it, we’ll be knee-deep in ice and snow, reminiscing about the long-gone days of summer. (Gross.)
While most people fill their summer days with loads of activities, from trips to the beach and ballpark to hikes through National parks and outlet malls, I’m here with an entirely different idea for winter. You’ve heard of a summer “Bucket List,” a list of things you’d like to do, see and experience before the season ends, but let’s talk about a Hibernation List for winter.
It’s a simple concept, really. Instead of a list of excursions to complete while the weather outside is glorious, a Hibernation List is made up of all the TV shows, movies and books you plan to binge on while hiding from the frigid, blustery hell that is winter.
You know all those shows you’ve been promising yourself you’d watch someday? THIS IS THAT DAY, only spread out over the months of December, January and February (and honestly, probably March and some of April). It’s a time for sweatpants and snacks. Blankets and beers. Potatoes of both the couch and chip variety. It’s the season of peak laziness, and I’m here to help you make the most of your downtime.
To get started, just take out a pen and paper and write down the shows you’re really, truly dying to watch. A pro tip from yours truly: Keep that pen and paper handy, as more things will come to mind and your Hibernation List will quickly spiral out of control. That’s OK—we’ve got awhile. Once your list starts taking shape, you really only need to decide what you want to watch first—and set your sights on checking that one off the list.
The most important step, of course: Carving out the time to binge. It may feel crazy now, but soon enough winter’s cold and snow will make the idea of staying in all weekend (and every weeknight) sound positively perfect.
A few simple Hibernation List guidelines for my fellow lazybones:
- Always make sure you have plenty of your favorite snacks on hand. This tip is first and foremost for a reason.
- Same goes for your favorite drinks. Stock up on tasty beverages, both alcoholic and not.
- Feel free to share list suggestions with other Hibernators. We’re all in this together! Let’s make it a community and a conversation.
- Work at your own pace. And by “work,” I, of course, mean “watch” or “read” or “nap.” Winter is a long season, so take your time.
- It’s OK to amend your list. Start something and don’t love it? Cross it off completely and move on.
- Don’t plan too far ahead. What you’re watching now may impact what you feel like watching next, so choose as you go.
- Take a break from binging, when necessary. Rest your eyes, stretch your legs, pet a dog. Just try to avoid going outside as much as possible.
And while we’re at it, there’s only one rule: No judging the contents of another Hibernator’s list. It doesn’t matter how old or popular a show or movie is. If you haven’t seen it, it’s new to you and totally allowed to be on your Hibernation List.
In case you were wondering, here’s what’s on my Hibernation List so far:
- The last two episodes of Ozark
- Master of None, Season 2
- Stranger Things, Season 2
- Friday Night Lights
- The last couple seasons of The Mindy Project
- Any one of the 17 books around my apartment that I’ve purchased over the last year but haven’t read
While it’s not quite winter yet, I did hear there’s Lake-effect snow in the forecast for tonight (!!!!). So this weekend, I say… screw going places. Put on your favorite sweats, pour some red wine, fire up Netflix and get to checking things off your Hibernation List.
It’s never too early to get started.