- Chipotle, Uber Eats, and Hinge have joined forces to launch the "Cuffing Season Menu," a selection of items for two customers eating together.
- The "Cuffing Season Menu," however, is an affront to me, a person who has been single for more than a year.
- It reminds me, yet again, that I'm alone. It also suggests that I should be attempting to find love in the time of COVID-19, as if simply staying healthy and gainfully employed during a massive global pandemic wasn't stressful enough.
- Moreover, the broader concept of "cuffing season" is foolish: why not just date whoever you want, whenever you want?
- "In our endless pursuit to meet our fans where they are, we teamed up with Uber Eats to create a series of fun, sharable pairings that can be enjoyed anywhere and will complement the dating experience," Tressie Lieberman, VP of Digital Marketing and Off-Premise, told Insider.
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On Thursday, Chipotle, Hinge, and Uber Eats introduced a new ploy to entice customers: the "Cuffing Season Menu."
Its name is a nod to the longstanding term for snagging a sexual partner to keep you warm through freezing winter months.
The menu itself includes three options: the "day date," (two entreés and chips and salsa); the "date night," (two entreés, chips and queso or guacamole and two "tractor" beverages); and the grandaddy of them all, the "Hinge date," which suggests you both share one entreé, chips and salsa, and one single "tractor" beverage. (This, presumably, happens after you both decide to venture into each other's COVID-19 pods.)
Aside from the biggest issue here — where is the alcohol? — the menu is also insulting to me, a single person and, presumably, the audience for this gimmick.
For one, it reminds me that I'm single. For the purposes of this story, I calculated the precise amount of time I've been alone, which is approximately 13 months, 19 days, and 23 hours. This is a depressing number. Do you know what I could have gone without knowing, were it not for the Cuffing Season Menu? The precise amount of time I've been waking up next to my own shadow since my last relationship.
The other problem with this menu is its timing. If I'm being charitable, I could say that it's nice Chipotle wants me to have a bedfellow in the depths of winter, and in this time of great uncertainty.
But as we've already established, I'm bitter and alone, so instead I'll say that I do not appreciate the expectation I prioritize finding love in the middle of a global pandemic. I have bigger things to worry about!
Dating under ordinary circumstances is bad enough. You have to put up with someone else's needs and desires. You have to hide the most undesirable parts of yourself for as long as possible. Doing this while also worrying about contracting a deadly virus? No!
Finally, "cuffing season" as a concept is stupid. Just date people when you want to date them. There's no need to tie yourself down to one person just because the temperature dips below 40 degrees.
The stunt, of course, is probably linked to the chain's booming delivery business. Digital sales were up 202.5% in the most recent quarter, making up 48.8% of sales, Chipotle reported in October.
"Our restaurants have been extremely popular date destinations, and many of our fans have found love bonding over their Chipotle obsessions," Tressie Lieberman, Chipotle's vice president of digital marketing and off-premise, told Insider. "In our endless pursuit to meet our fans where they are, we teamed up with Uber Eats to create a series of fun, sharable pairings that can be enjoyed anywhere and will complement the dating experience."
To that I'll say that corporate stunts are grating, and even more so when they directly injure my ego.
Nevertheless, if you choose to ignore my impassioned case, you can indulge in the CSM until December 5.
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