This wasn’t supposed to be a whole long essay but it somehow turned into 400+ words.
Recently I have been accused of not being a good friend to someone because I never hang out with them anymore. My only defense to this is that they only ever want to hang out and do one specific thing, never deviating. This one thing is not destructive nor is it illegal but it is boring to do over and over and over. This person has even refused to go to see a movie in the theater (even for free) because, “If [they] don’t like the movie [they’ll] still have to sit through the whole thing.” The rationale behind that statement is that if they watch a movie at home and they don’t like it they won’t have to watch the entire thing. To be fair, I have on very rare occasions gotten them to come out to other places than what is directly within their comfort zone.
The way I look at it, this is the kind of friendship which is like this street below:
This is problematic because in my mind it should be more like this street:
I am not trying to say this person isn’t a really great guy. In fact, he is one of the most giving people I know. BUT, this is only the case – it seems to me – when he gets his way and everything goes exactly the way he wants it to go. Deviate from those given parameters and suddenly I am not his friend anymore because “I never hang out” with him and only hang out with him when it is “convenient for me.” Well seeing as you only ever want to do one thing – and it has to be done exactly the way you want to do it with no other options on the table – I guess I am only doing it when it is convenient for me. Variety is the spice of life. I like variety, I like going out and doing other things, and sometimes I like just sitting at home. When you get invited to countless other things and even to just come hang out by me don’t get angry when I don’t want to go do this one other thing repeatedly.
Sidenote: Those “Two-way street” signs are REALLY few and far between in Toronto! That picture took a lot of GoogleMapping to find a street which went from being a one-way street and became a two-way street after an intersection necessitating that sign.
This post is dedicated to my friends. I am a huge fan of every last one of you and will go to the ends of the earth for all y’all.
Whether I’m just hanging out with you, talking to you on the phone, emailing you, texting/BBMing you, talking online, or going to awesome events I have so much gratitude for you being in my life.
Be it tolerating me using you as a sounding board whilst I navigate this thing we call life, you calling me out on my flaws, you helping me realize how obviously I am expressing some things I thought were well hidden and forcing me to act on them, giving me the courage to get through the hard things; trials; and tribulations in life, or just supporting me however you can and however you do it I cannot begin to express my appreciation for you.
I try to be as logical and rational about most things in my life and world around me but me feelings towards my friends can only be defined as love. (This is coming from a guy who doesn’t believe he has ever been in love.) I love you people and you know who you are.
I am so thankful that each and every one of you are in my life. Thank you for being here with me for the ride. I can’t imagine life without you and don’t want to.
To my readers who don’t know who the hell I’m talking about: I pray that you have people that you feel this way about. Call them, text them, message them, hug them in the streets, do whatever you gotta do just show them how you feel!
Just writing this post put a smile on my face.
Wow, since that picture above was taken it has been 5 long years. I have seen both of these guys individually since this picture was taken but we haven’t all been together in the same city since April 2006. Back in the day (which was a Tuesday, if anyone ever says “back in the day”, the day they’re referring to was a Tuesday) we used to be inseparable. I met Akiva when he and his family moved from South Africa to Canada in 5th grade and then met Jon in high school in 10th Grade. When Akiva came to our high school in 11th Grade a lifelong bond was formed between the three of us. We became as close as brothers and, quite honestly, I talk to them more often these days than I talk to my brothers by who are genetically my family.
We went to Israel together after high school and spent the year touring around Israel and having adventures. But we haven’t all hung out together since they were both in town when that picture above was taken. Now, Akiva still lives in Israel and is married with 3 kids – and is quite a bit more responsible than anyone ever thought possible. Jon lives in London, England and is still living the single life with a girlfriend every now and again much like me. I, as you all know, live in Toronto and as previously stated am still unattached.
Of course, both of them come into Toronto fairly frequently to visit their families but, unfortunately, the timing never worked out in the past bunch of years for all of us to be together in the same city until now. So I am happily headed out tonight to chill with my boys again and see what kind of trouble we can get into. (Yes, I am trying to recapture my youth! Don’t judge me!)
This also reminds me that I have to go visit them in London and Israel at some point in the future – I still haven’t been back to Israel since 2001 and I’ve never been to London.
Have a great rest of the weekend folks!
This post has been written with A LOT of anger. However, at the end of the day, everything that has happened falls to me as my fault. I very easily could have made sure it didn’t happen the way it did. BUT it would have also meant ignoring the wisdom imparted to us by our parents and society.
I have always tried to follow the “rules of being a good person” I’ve been taught growing up, be it by my parents or by society. However, I am coming to realize more and more that these rules are a load of garbage. The saying goes “a friend in need is a friend indeed.” This means, they tell us to be there for your friends and always help them out in the time of need. That is something I have always tried to do however, somehow no one else ever seems to care enough about me to help me out in my time of need. I look out for my friends but it seems more often than not they are not looking out for me. Maybe I have had the terrible luck to only have a bulk of friends who take advantage of my good nature in my near 30 years on this Earth which in a way I sort of hope is true. Seems to me that more often than not most people are looking out for themselves and only themselves and the rest of the world can go to hell as far as they are concerned.
What is prompting me to write this? Well a lot of things to be honest but one thing in specific.
Some of my readers may have wondered why I posted such a short post last night and now I will tell you. The reason for this was because I have a friend I have been very tight with for a long time and last night he messaged me that he wanted to go out. I told him I was already doing a number of things and that we might go out later but I couldn’t promise anything. He proceeded to guilt trip me over the next 2 hours to come out to grab a beer with him (on him) even though I had a million things to do that night and had to wake up early the next morning. The fact that I went out last night with him is also why I posted such a crappy, short post last night – he was busy messaging me and giving me a guilt trip as I was trying to think of what to write and how to write it saying that he was asking me for an “important favor”. Notice, he wouldn’t tell me what was such a huge issue that he had to get out of the house just that it was important.
I, in retrospect stupidly, gave in to his guilt trip and went out with him for “1 or 2 beers” which turned into over 2 hours. We were out til 1:30am and when I told him I was dead tired and wanted to go home (remember I drove in my car) and he shouldn’t get to get McDonald’s take out did he listen? NOPE!!! He didn’t give a crap about me, he wanted to get his food and my feelings on the matter didn’t factor in to the equation. I am well aware that the time spent getting the food was probably under 5 minutes but it was the principle of the matter that really ticked me off about that.
I should have just left him at the McDonald’s, people only respect you in this world when you’re a jerk to them it seems. But I didn’t, I waited for him to go get his fast food at 1:30 am after we were out for 2 hours and I was supposed to be awake in 5 hours to make it downtown on time. I was supposed to be downtown for an event that not only was I done a huge favor by being given the expensive ticket for free, I really wanted to hear all the speakers and what they had to say.
So what was this huge thing that he needed to get out of the house so badly? He had a fight with his wife over her mother’s reaction to their plans to move out of the city. It wasn’t even a real fight! It was just a fight as the result of an overly emotional response to news. This is the kind of fight which is probably completely GONE by today. The results for me? Instead of waking up early to go to a conference I really wanted to be at on time (downtown at 8:30am) I slept through my alarm, disappointed my editor, missed the first 2 hours of the event and wrote the bulk of this post from the subway at 11am en route to the event which started at 9am.
When I sent him a number of messages today (and called him 3 times) did he respond with a proper/real apology? NOPE.
His first response to my torrent of messages (when he didn’t answer the phone the first two times) “Set an alarm.” Thanks Einstein, but I was so dead tired I slept through it.
When I said I did and I slept through it his response: “OK don’t blame me for that…I’m sorry for asking you to come out.” Really? I shouldn’t blame you for pestering me and calling our friendship into question until I agreed to go out to with you only so you can keep me out when you knew I had to be up early so I was so exhausted I slept through my alarm? No, that had clearly nothing to do with you.
The point of this post is a learning experience for me and I hope everyone out there can learn from it so you don’t make the same mistakes I did. Always remember YOU ARE #1. Look out for yourself because more often than not you’re the only one doing so.
Unfortunately, the world we live in educates us one way and then seems to reward people who know which of the lessons to ignore. That’s the reason for the other age old axiom: “Nice guys finish last”. I have always been somewhat of a scholastic autodidact but in terms of societal lessons I was a believer and learned the lessons taught. Silly me.
Maybe I am being too negative and will come to regret this post. Maybe I am looking at this whole situation wrong. Maybe I’m not…what do you think?
I had not a whole heck of a lot to post tonight to be perfectly honest.
However, if I am going to maintain my Post A Day 2011 I have to post something tonight.
So I have decided to get very personal.
If you follow my twitter account you may have seen my response to the #IfICouldTalkToAnyone hashtag started by Wind Mobile. If you didn’t see it the reply was that it would be a guy (and I named both of his Twitter handles) “…who was 1 of my best friends & now hates me & wont talk to me & I dunno know why“. Although other people had replied to the topic/hashtag with mostly celebrities or famous people and some with joking and ridiculous answers I put a lot of thought into my answer and that was honestly the most important person I could think of who I would like to have a conversation with.
Two days later, he answered me via Twitter. He hurled insults at me and called me “thick” for not knowing why he despises me so much. I truly do not know why he does and would not have written that tweet or this post if I did.
It is sad that this individual refuses to talk to me and seems to enjoy hating me so much. We were like brothers for about a decade. Maybe this is just a family squabble and one day we will be friends again. I personally believe that most people do not endeavor to be jerks and often when we think people are jerks their actions are merely being misinterpreted and misunderstood. I think we need more understanding of each other in the world and more rational, logical, unemotional discussion that leaves ego by the wayside. Sometimes we may need an intermediary to accomplish this but in general life is too short, in my opinion, for fights between friends of this nature.
In case you are wondering, the answer is no to any of the usual questions that might anger a friend with another. I didn’t steal his girlfriend. I didn’t embarrass him in public. I didn’t screw him out of money.
The only thing I can think of is that I did say something via BBM that he took serious insult to (and I didn’t expect such a serious reaction to it) but I apologized to him the next day when he called me about it. This last thing was about a year ago. If that is what this is all about I am truly sorry. I am apologizing in public. I am truly sorry. If I ever thought you would take that comment so seriously and we would be in this position a year later I wouldn’t have said it. It was a joke. It wasn’t a personal attack and it was not meant to be that serious. I said it then and I will say it again, beyond apologizing for my joke there is nothing more than I can do.
Life is too short to throw away a decade’s worth of friendship like that in my opinion. I am considering other options as to how I should deal with this situation and attempt to rectify it although friends have told me it isn’t worth my energy. I disagree with that and think there’s a way we can work things out if he would only speak to me calmly and without being verbally abusive towards me.
Do you have any friendships that ended which you wish you could repair? Have you repaired any friendships that fell on hard times? How did you do it?