This is a new term for me - Cuffing. We used to call it "Coupling" back in High School where you had a girlfriend for the cold Michigan winters. And then you'd want to be single with school out for the summer.

This week, mother nature threw another curve ball at West Michigan singles. First the unofficial end of summer with Labor Day and now the colder weather. It's bad enough that today is our last 8 PM sunset and we may have also had our last 80 degree day. Less sunlight and colder weather makes you want to couple up for winter and that new term is called "Cuffing" And then you throw in COVID-19 and what are you supposed to do if you're single?

Back before COVID-19 you could go to bars and sit next to someone that you'd like to meet. Not now, you're going to be at least six feet away and how easy is it to strike up a conversation wearing a mask? So your best bet maybe ONLINE DATING and you're lucky there is an APP for that.

TIPS FOR ONLINE DATING TO FIND YOUR 'CUFFING' PARTNER

VIRTUAL DATES - On Zoom, Teams, Facetime, etc. No pressure, but make sure you have good lighting - invest invest in a ring light, you'll look better and check out your backdrop and that's a good idea and investment for work too. Ladies put the cats in another room, he doesn't need to think you're a crazy cat lady on first date. BTW I have rescue cats so love that. Some ideas for first virtual date - share a bottle of wine together. Guys you could take the initiative and have that bottle delivered to your date. Maybe wine isn't your thing - share some of the great GR beers. Football is back watch part of the game together on a virtual date. Suggest you do at least five virtual dates before moving on and meeting in person.

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After you agree to meet remember these guidelines.

MEET OUTDOORS: Time maybe running out on this one, but looks like it'll be nice next weekend.

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WEAR A MASK: It's only polite to both of you.

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FOLLOW SOCIAL DISTANCE GUIDELINES & LOCAL RULES:

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BOTH GET TESTED FOR COVID BEFORE TAKING NEXT STEP.

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Maybe your virtual dates and in-person meet-up went well. Check your temps and then decide when it's time for the first kiss. Everyone's sensitivity to Covid-19 is different. Discuss the risk before the kiss. Good luck in your "cuffing" search, I'm so glad to have a steady girlfriend. Good luck and be safe.