Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Time for me to get back up on my soapbox. So I know some folks got all upset with me some time back over definitions of words but here I am talking about the very same thing. Specifically one term that folks like to throw around -- friends. And yes, I am guilty of it at times.

I tend to work on a loose definition that I received throughout my childhood from my mother. (Yeah, I know. As twisted as she can be, I actually do listen to her sometimes. Because sometimes, she's right.) The hardest part for me has been to find a way to put the definition into words since my mother never actually gave me a definition but chose to educate my example. As in, "That person is not your friend. That person is merely an acquaintance."

It took me many years to recognize the difference between those people who my mother categorized as friends and those who were acquaintances. Obviously you know both. And here's a scary thing. You may spend as much time around acquaintances as you would around friends. Perhaps even more. What I have realized is that friends are the people from whom you will tolerate a lot more -- and they do the same for you. Kind of like when I had to explain to this guy in college that it was OK for me to call Jade "bitch" but if he dared to try it, he was going to end up severely injured. There are things for which I would forgive a friend at the drop of a hat but only to turn a cold shoulder to an acquaintance for doing the same. Jade and I can have full-on screaming matches in which we use all kinds of profanity and drag out all the dirty laundry. An hour later, no one would ever guess what had previously happened. I suppose the tolerance comes from knowing that a true friend has the same tolerance level for my crap and will be there no matter what.

Perhaps it's the Cancer in us. (Yes, my mother is a Cancer as well. And that perhaps explains our often strained relationship.) When it gets down to it, I don't have a lot of friends. Not that acquaintances don't ever stand the chance of becoming friends. It just takes time. Like it did with my friends. Because letting folks into the inner circle is kind of hard for us crabby types.

And what got me thinking of all of this? Well, part of my mother's differentiation was that people with whom you party for the most part are acquaintances. Well, at least if that is your most significant link. Unless you can somehow transcend this level of thinking. I was ready to write off an "acquaintance" a few months ago. But I stuck in there because I really didn't have a choice. And we ended up going through a lot of stuff together. And because of all that other stuff, I finally feel like this person is a friend.

The lesson learned is that sometimes it's OK to be persistent and to not give up.

On a final note, this is my new fave video. I think the music should be the background for the Boys Are Stupid game on David & Goliath. And yes, I kick butt at this game. Just wish they'd add on some new levels.

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