Posts tagged ‘friendship potential’
i was recently talking a good friend on the phone. she, like my girlfriend, is much less into the social media than i am. in fact, when my girlfriend knows i will be talking to her, she says to say hi to her “non-facebook friend.”
we were talking about our various ways of dealing with people and our desire for new people to connect deeply with, and after talking about how private she and my girlfriend are, i talked about how i tend to approach new people (not all new people, just the good ones) with something like that book are you my mother? except my version is “are you my new bff?”
it’s so hard for me, the level of shallowness of relationships being a grown-up sort of necessitates. there are people i am close to, but man, i want the grown-up version of sitting outside of dorm rooms sharing secrets with almost-strangers.
i think of things like this blog and facebook like that, but one reason i’ve been lacking in posts over here is because of how creepy the motives of facebook seems to be. as a human, in dealing with humans one-to-one, i think of oversharing as a way to stay safe almost– if there are no secrets, no one can find out your secrets. but then, these days, big brother is a reality in ways i can’t fathom.
i think of blogs as being like the end of the movie pump up the volume when all of the radio stations start popping up. it’s magical. and it makes me nauseated when i think that the reason these services are free is that data is being collected like mad. i dislike when my naivete is shattered, y’all.
yesterday, my girlfriend burst into some of the biggest laughter i’ve heard from her in a long time. “i’m not sure if this was meant for me or not, but friend fifty-seven just sent me a text message that said, ‘fuck, now i can’t tell the difference between celery and green onions.'” for this, i will be forever grateful, because we’ve been having a sad time in our house, and things that make her laugh make me happy. and i don’t care if he can’t tell the difference between the two as long as he leaves them both out of my food.
for about a year, i really only knew of friend fifty-seven from word of mouth– he was the teacher in the class that my girlfriend worked in. cute and/or distressing stories of kids and the amusingly aloof music aficionado of a teacher made it home regularly. later, she started working as a teacher at the same school as his fiance and so i’d get to hear stories about him as boyfriend as well– impulsive tattoos and leaving when the house was full of crafting women further filled out my perception of someone she clearly liked and respected.
we got invited to their wedding where we became “the dancing couple” at the reception (later learning, though my girlfriend had suspected, that the party music standards we were dancing to, were not actually the songs they had carefully, meticulously, and artfully chosen). we’ve hung out a few times, and our various shynesses and social awkwardnesses, as well as our very different interests, have not made for the best conversations. but i know that he enjoys my facebook posts about watching “wings” so i feel a little less awkward.
she said, “you should meet friend fifty-three, barnaby. we call him the spine-ripper.”
so, i was surprised to meet a calm, friendly, somewhat geeky young man who was really fun to talk to. when i lived in the pacific northwest, we hung out in groups a few times in seattle, and we’ve become facebook friends. i always look forward to his posts about his life and political things, as well as events that he’s going to that sound fun. he also posts about things related to all this technology stuff we are all embroiled in and when my eyes don’t glaze over, i appreciate those things, too.
for the record, he has never actually ripped out a spine, but he says that when one does, it sounds like a giant zipper, only wetter.
creative. dynamic. a little intimidating. someone with a very strong presence who stirs up the positive energy when she enters a room, i wasn’t surprised to learn that after we went to new college together, friend forty-seven, who i will refer to here as “april danyluk,” went to clown school. a snazzy dresser and fantastic performer, at college, if friend forty-seven was there, i knew whatever event i was at was going to have a beautiful and fun level of unconventionality. we lived in the bay area for a little while at the same time, and ran into each other at an event out here, but we’re still in that “friendship potential” stage of things.
the friendliest face. that’s what characterizes most of my memories of friend forty-five, annie s.
when i was in college, i had a housemate who was in a band out of his bedroom. he’d play drums from his second floor bedroom and his friends would come over and they’d play instruments and sing. it was always a pleasure when friend forty-five would come over to visit him, and her singing voice was the best thing to float into my room from his.
our families lived in the same part of florida’s west coast during those college summers and there were always vague friendly plans to hang out.
and right now, all of her posts are fierce wonderful things about the occupy student debt campaign. after years of feeling charmed but shy, i now feel a little intimidated and awed as well.
it’s one in the afternoon.
i’m bleary-eyed and foggy after a week-long trip to the pacific northwest, going broke on donuts and coffee and cute independently produced art. my back is cramped from too many types of beds and my sinuses are going crazy.
but the trip was amazing. it was amazing to see all of the wonderful places i used to know so well. olympia has really barely changed, and then as we were driving out of seattle in the pouring rain, i thought that i could have just as easily wrapped myself in coffee and KEXP as i did when I was 23 years old.
we saw people, but just a select few. those selections always make me feel guilty, but if i saw all of the people i wanted to see in all of the places we spent a day and a half, i would be even less functional today than i am, and i would have been a basketcase all trip, trying to coordinate schedules and transportation. instead, it was just 1 or 2 sets of folks each place. and that was perfect. except for that whole leaving people out thing. someday. someday there will be infinite time to see all of the dear ones. (that’s what facebook is for, right?)
i miss it all, you know. that’s the trouble with me and all the moving i’ve done. there’s always someone to love, but there’s also always someone to miss. there are places that stay achingly the same and there are places that change beyond recognition so you’re afraid of going back. and there are people who hug the same and people who talk the same and people who have lost weight and people who are now in love and people who still knit and people who make you laugh until you cry and people you want to stay up talking to past 3 am and people who have known you since you were a person who embarrasses you now… and i’d like to have you all in my pocket or as my upstairs neighbor, but instead you are flung out and scattered like the stars.
like many of us, when i was in high school and college, i wrote wretchedly bad poetry. my freshman year of college, i tried to get into a much-coveted poetry class with a poem about the chipped silver nailpolish of the girl i had a crush on and a statement of purpose about how i never edited anything. i didn’t get in. friend forty, funnily enough, was the person who had to tell me the news. before that, i think our friendship potential had been quite high, but after that, even though it hadn’t been her decision, i think i got a little distant. which is sad, because this smart girl with a sweet demeanor and smile and actual poetry talent would probably have been a lot of fun to hang out with.
perhaps i have the chance again. we recently ran into each other (she was with friend twenty-nine) at the sfmoma cafe, and made all of those “let’s be facebook friends and really hang out” hopes and promises. i hope it can work out.