friend thirty-two.

October 29, 2011 at 7:53 am 2 comments

friend thirty-two, who i will refer to here as “amelia bird,” was part of what may have been the most perfect moment in my life. and fortunately for me, it was captured on videotape, and whenever i watch it, i still get misty-eyed.

at new college, there is this wonderful thing called “dance tutorial.” students choreograph dances, find other students willing to perform them, and at the end of every semester, there is an epic outpouring of love and support for these performances, which vary in range from amazingly talented to endearingly earnest to intentionally hilarious. one performance forever stands out for me. in it, three fabulous ladies danced to toto’s “africa” in a way that was definitely on the “intentionally hilarious” side of things, but there was something about it that was even more than that. i’m not sure what was so perfect about it, but to give you an idea, i will tell you that friend thirty-two wore ’80’s workout gear and a fannypack from which she later pulled out feathers, another of the performers rolled a tire across the stage, and eventually they all got the audience to sing along. when i showed the video to my girlfriend, worried she wouldn’t understand, she totally got it– it is perfect. “it’s everything that’s good about being in college.” it’s like an interpretive dance of the freedom, joy, acceptance and goofiness of that time in life. so good.

another thing about friend thirty-two is that she’s stunningly beautiful. in a lot of the traditional ways that beauty is defined in this society, but with this extra added boldness, sweetness, and intelligence that makes it more than the world expects. i’ve sat around naked with her and discussed a whole lot of things. i’ve fed her with my hands and she’s fed me with her hands at college parties. she gives fantastic hugs and is wonderful to talk to about the broad issues of the world or the things one’s heart is wrestling with.

i was about to say i saw her recently, and then realized that by that i mean 2 or 3 years ago. she was finishing up a revered writing mfa program in the midwest and was visiting one of the friends who was in that dance performance (and come to think of it, the third lady was there as well), and i got to hang out with them and help her make us all a giant amazing pot of tom kha soup. another great moment in my life. nothing will top that dance, but sharing amazing food comes pretty close.

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friend thirty-three. friend thirteen.

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Adelaide Mankato  |  January 24, 2012 at 2:38 am

    I remember that ‘Africa’ routine. It was heavenly.

    Reply
  • 2. cubbie  |  January 30, 2012 at 3:31 am

    i know, right?

    Reply

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