STAGE ONE: FOMO
You remove your finger from the Play button and sigh deeply. Your eyes dart to the window to see that, yes, it's still snowing. It's time to decide. You could either melt back into your bed and potentially miss out on the inside joke that will last for years (remember how that happened in 7th grade and you still don't know what it means?) OR you could buck up, have a night of laughing and fun with your friends and risk losing your texting hand to frostbite.
You glance at your computer screen hoping for a sign and see the Friends logo is on the screen. Does this mean you should hang out with your IRL friends? Or is this to serve as a reminder that Phoebe, Rachel, Monica, Ross, Joey and Chandler will always be there for you even if you're not wearing pants? Your phone buzzes again. "Are you coming?" Oh, fine.
STAGE TWO: SWEATING THE OUTFIT
You begrudgingly switch off your heated blanket and stare blindly into your closet. It's full of sweaters that are too bulky to look cute and dresses that are dresses and it's Winter. You silently curse the first person who decided to wear heels in the winter as your grab you heeled booties, a flannel, a vest, thick socks, gloves, a scarf and a hat out of your closet. "We'll pick you up in 5!" your phone alerts you. It's a race against the clock to get your gear on. Now, you're sweating. The make-up you quickly swiped on is creasing. You actually can't wait to go outside because you're wearing 46 layers.
STAGE THREE: BRACING THE COLD
JK! It's cold. Like really cold. Why does the snow hitting your face feel like rocks? In the short 12-second walk to the car, your face is flushed and the sweaty hair you earned from getting ready has begun to freeze. As your hand reaches for the car door, you hope the warmth of your friends' greeting will warm you to the core.
STAGE FOUR: BOOZE BLANKET
You realize that your friends' greeting will never warm you like vodka does. It's not fur- lined, it's not down, it's not even fuzzy - but the booze blanket is the absolute warmest. So, at the pregame, take a shot if you want. Have another beer, if you want. This is the one season when your two-mixed-drink rule can be broken ... and it can be broken before you even get to the bar.
STAGE FIVE: REGRETTING STAGE TWO
You've got your beer blanket on. It's suuuuuuper warm. So warm that your face is starting to get hot and you're questioning if you put on deodorant. You're cruising around the bar when you decide, it's time to remove some of your layers. Why did you have to wear three pairs of socks? Does the coat check check socks? You remove your coat, scarf, gloves, two layers of socks and finally you feel like you can enjoy the night. You're almost as snuggly and happy as you were in your bed.
STAGE SIX: HALFWAY REGRETTING STAGE ONE
But that was two hours ago. Now you can't find your coat and you can see someone drunkenly picking up your sock off the bar floor. One step out the door and you realize unlayering was a terrible idea. You wonder how that episode of Friends ended. But hey ... that night when you all went to the bar in the snow, made snow angels on the way to the car - that's something that'll always stick with you.