December 18, 2012

"I have a confession to make. I think I'm in friend-love with you."

"I don't want to date you or even make out with you. Because that would be weird. I just so desperately want for you to think that I am this super-awesome person because I think you are a super-awesome person."

An incredibly charming cartoon. Via Metafilter, where bitteroldman says: "Ha - boy did this resonate! For about 10 years now, my only socializing has been with my wife, her friends, her friends' spouses, and people at work."

While they're nice, I don't consider them friends - well my wife for sure, but not anyone else. I used to have a handful of friends in college and university, but then things fizzled out the way they do. The only friend I had out of school and work was this one guy, who then "left me" when he met his wife.

While I'm eternally grateful for my wife, i must admit it's been a difficult run, not having a "buddy" with whom I can go out and hang out with or do non-couple stuff with. No one to help move, or help me move; no one to help build their garden shed or help me build my deck. No one with whom I can flip a few burgers and nestle a cold beer (or Pinot Noir). And sometimes you just want to connect on a deeper level with someone who you're not intimately involved with.

It really brought me down in the past, but I'm dealing with it better now. That being said, from time to time, I do meet a person who might possess all of my friend qualifications - same interests as me, similar ethics and morals. So then I'll say to myself, 'maybe I'll ask him out for a beer...'

And honestly, it's like asking someone out on a date - the prepared speech, the sweaty palms, the collar-clutching, the stuttering, kicking he dirt, looking at the ground the whole time. If I do go out, I make sure I'm dressed up nice, check to see if my hair parts the way I like it. Pick out a nice place I'm sure he'd like, and then pray to Good God that we have things in common. I laugh heartily at his jokes, am sure to ask him about himself, and try not to talk about me too much. I try to appear fun and confident. After our "date", if things go well, I wait by the phone for a phone call (which never comes); if I don't feel that connection, well, I let the guy down easy if he wants something more.

It's so silly sometimes, the way I feel about this. And I know i'm not the only one going through this. I cry inside and sometimes outside when I see someone else going through the same emotions as me. YOUR"RE NOT ALONE - I FEEL THE SAME WAY AS YOU! I want to say. But I don't. Because they'd probably be humiliated if they knew that I knew how they felt. But I watch and I see and I know. And I would cheer for them if it worked out for them. But it usually never does.

That need for a connection. That need for a bond. That cursed thing that unites us all and at the same time keeps us apart.

It's been so long. I forgot what a friend is supposed to do or supposed to be.

32 comments:

Leni Dog said...

Dudes a fag

edutcher said...

The Blonde is my buddy; the way Meade is your buddy.

I don't know if Leni is right, but a lot of people just need that one someone and a few friends.

This guy is trying to say, "I admire you greatly and I want you to like me back".

Anything else and it gets a little weird,

Borepatch said...

Err, how about:

"Hey, we should go to a Braves game some time."

There, isn't that all better? [I think I may be saying the same thing as Leni Dog, only a different way]

Smilin' Jack said...

It's been so long. I forgot what a friend is supposed to do or supposed to be.

Just be sure he uses a condom when he does it.

Synova said...

When my kids were little and I lived in a place I didn't know anyone much and all my friends were "moms" and we talked about babies and I thought my soul was dying and I didn't dare ever put myself out there to say, hey, I'm weird in these ways, are you too? Because I was lonely and I was afraid that if I talked about what interested me, they wouldn't like me.

And I thought... I needed a "singles" service, personal ads... to find a friend. Where I could say I think this is funny and love that kind of movie and I write and I like nature hikes and walks on the beach... maybe we could meet and find out if we could be friends.

But that would be WEIRD.

It's not so bad anymore when the kids aren't babies. They don't cuddle as much (or at all) but they can have intelligent conversations. So that helps.

Mary Beth said...

Leni Dog said...

Dudes a fag

12/18/12 8:53 PM


He's a she.

Patrick said...

After all, we only have so much time in this world

Mary Beth said...

I meant the cartoonist, not the metafilter person.

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

Sounds like one of them is redundant.

traditionalguy said...

OK, this guy needs to learn to play golf. The guys get a half day away in twosomes and foursomes and sometimes three day trips away to play several courses in resort areas. The wives look forward to us going. Hmmm.

Making a friend can be easy at a Presbyterian or Baptist Sunday School class. You see them every week anyway.

The best action movies are not acceptable to the feminine wife. So a friend will attend with me on a Sunday afternoon.

For example a Jack Reacher novel is now a movie with Tom Cruse. That interests me because it is sure to be 100% male in its approach to action, fighting, and guns.

Ann Althouse is a magnificent woman and brain, but guys need some other points of view for fellowship too.

caplight45 said...

Oh, good, I can;t wait till some guy "pops the question" to me. Bromance.

EMD said...

For example a Jack Reacher novel is now a movie with Tom Cruse. That interests me because it is sure to be 100% male in its approach to action, fighting, and guns.

I've started going to movies by myself. I mean, I watch them at home by myself, and it's not like you're there to chat, right?

I went to a Sunday night (9:30) screening of The Artist and had the entire theater to myself, which was nice.

Dante said...

Real friends are really hard to come by, really good ones. I've lived life with really only one good friend ever. I don't want more, and I don't want less. It's taxing, and necessary. I've found once you have a real friend, somehow it doesn't matter how many years have passed, you can still connect at a deep level.

A very old friend of mine, a "commoner," once made the following claim. By commoner, I mean the guy had a high school diploma, and drove a truck.

He said that it would be more difficult to transmit AIDs from a woman to a man than a man to a woman.

As it happens, I was on business in Germany not too many years after the AIDs outbreak, and was having a beer in the bar in the hotel. There I met a man who claimed to be some muckety muck in the AIDs deal with the CDC. And he had the right demeanor, and the right words. I told him of my friend's theory, and he told me it was wrong, due to "micro cuts" on the male penis. This was when they still desperately wanted AIDs to be a heterosexual disease.

Well, he was wrong, the scientists advising him were wrong, and the disease is liberalism biasing scientists.

Why do I bring this up? I pointed out to my friend, and he got a smile, discussed how the semen would swirl around in the woman, and of course he was right and not surprised at all.

All I have to say, is I can pick them.

Joan said...

I am blessed in that I don't need friends, because I have sisters.

I know a lot of families are just sources of heartbreak or just plain old stress, but my sisters are the ones with whom I share all the day-to-day goofy things that interest me and interest them. Well, it would be day-to-day if we still lived in the same time zone. *sigh*

That said, I am blessed also to have three very good friends whom I rarely get to see and don't keep in such close contact with, but whenever we do get in touch, it's as if no time has passed at all. I confess to being the world's worst correspondent, and there's no excuse, especially with email and all that social media out there supposedly making it so much easier to keep in touch. But I know these people from the pre-internet era and our relationships don't extend onto the web so much. It's OK. We'll always be friends.

Synova -- I had exactly the same experience, and rejoice that my kids are such interesting people now, especially since they'll all still be living at home for some time, given their ages.

EDH said...

Sweet cartoon.

bitteroldman's story is roughly the theme of the movie "I Love You, Man".

The story is pretty simple--making friends tends to get more and more challenging as we get older and more settled into our lives. That's never been truer than for Peter Klaven, a so-called "Girlfriend Guy" who's never really had a best guy friend. As Peter begins to plan the rest of his life with the girl of his dreams (Parks and Recreation's Rashida Jones), the pressure to find a best man and not feel like a friendless freak becomes more intense. Enter Sidney, a Venice Beach-dwelling, super-laid-back, Rush-loving, vaguely employed (but clearly successful) financial planner with no desire to commit, a room in his house dedicated to all things masculine and an intense desire to have a good time as often as possible. Soul mates, right?

Chip Ahoy said...

a few burgers and nestle a cold beer

Did you say burgers and Newcastle beer? It's ale, yes, I'm in.

Skyler said...

The cartoon was pathetic.

-bear said...

First thought for sure a split-tail.

Commenters so far trend toward dude with 'dude' issues.

Syn0v:....yikes! Several year reader, rare poster. You write things that inspire me: like NY, lights that.. So very looking forward to the intelligent convo portion of parentness; and my last hope is still a 4 yo.

Anne:

Charming. So apt. How peculiar would it be to meet Synova in several years in Madison, signed up for the Professor's only (if ever!) bailiff one oh one state mandated night certification class at the UofW with a Bernese and Cane Corso in my airstream (behind a Ford Bronco) 'fishing' hut only to end up in a '...café' with dogs that Meade (I want to call you "Law," Lawrence...fyi) isn't even courting.

Synova's pooches are brindle and tri-colored cavaliers. (in this obscure projection I've formulated).

I'm wierd in these [and other] ways, are you too?

Believe it or not I'm @ disney world enjoying Tuaca by myself! Also a huge Lee Child fan. Read every Reacher novel published.

-bear

wyo sis said...

Lee Child wrote the perfect man of action. No other author comes close except Robert Parker.
Tom Cruise in NOT Jack Reacher! There are a million reasons, but the first one is, Jack Reacher is a big man. Tom Cruise is a tiny pretty boy.

Fred Drinkwater said...

Lee Child apparently has said that he thinks Cruise is a good Reacher. wyo sis: Apparently Child said that Reacher's physical attributes are merely symbolic, and are well substituted for by Cruise's acting personality.
I have doubts.
I also think (hope?) that Child must have signed one of those contracts that block an author from publicly disparaging a movie production.

Fred Drinkwater said...

Hey, how'd those two lines get swapped?
Althouse, do you have a poltergeist?

Mitchell the Bat said...

Who the fuck "nestles" anything?

Kelly said...

My husband is just one of those people who everyone likes. They could be a ditch digger or the VP of a large company, he's got friends all over the world. He was in EL Paso recently doing some work and playing golf on his day off. He got adopted by elderly Mexicans, invited to their favorite watering hole, and over to one of their houses for dinner.

When he was in Iraq working with the Iraqi army, he's the only instructor that got gifts of homemade food (which you aren't suppose to eat, but he ate it all under their watchful eyes and paid for it later if you catch my drift), a watch with an Iraqi flag on it and when it was found out he was leaving, a couple of guys hitchhiked to make it in time to say goodbye to him.

Me on the other hand?? I can relate to this guy. Takes me forever to make a friend and I find it really awkward to ask someone out for coffee or to go to a movie..

The Gold Digger said...

a Jack Reacher novel is now a movie with Tom Cruse.

Which, despite what Lee Child allegedly said, is a horrible miscast. I can see Clive Owen as Reacher, I can see Daniel Craig as Reacher, I can see Harrison Ford (in his younger days) as Reacher. I cannot see Tom Cruise as Reacher. I just hope every Lee Child novel I read from now on won't be ruined by the idea of Tom Cruise as Reacher.

Alexander said...

There is nothing 'charming' about this. This woman has no problem expecting a man to make an enormous time and emotional investment in her while at the same time hammering the point home time and time again that she has no desire to reciprocate. Her needs fulfilled, his not at all. This is an incredibly cruel LJBF wrapped up in the sentiment that to deny her this would break her heart.

It's... sadiestic.

LordSomber said...

Guy needs a Pamprin.

Meade said...

Clichés but all true: "If you want a friend, get a dog" and "If you want a friend, be a friend". Also, there were those self-help best sellers from the 60's and 70's "How To Be Your Own Best Friend" and "I'm OK - You're OK" plus, the classic Charles Schulz' "Happiness is a Warm Puppy".

The book I would write if I wanted to write a book motivated purely out of by my love for humanity : How to Be OK Pursuing Happiness as a Warm Friend To a Puppy Not of One's Own but By Borrowing Your Neighbor's Best Friend and Taking Him to Dog Parks Where He Can Make Lots of Friends of His Own.

What's stopping me from writing it is I just don't have that much love for humanity. I'd write it for caninity but or course canines don't read. And besides, they don't need self help - they need our help.

Bob Marley spoke some harsh but true truth when he said: “The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.”

And he was right!

Freeman Hunt said...

I know lots of people who I think are looking for close friends. They should have a website to link up.

Also, I was thinking the other day that someone could make a good deal of money setting up an online dating site for people with extremely high IQs. Those people have a difficult time finding each other, and someone could help them out and make some money at the same time.

Freeman Hunt said...

Part of the problem might be that the most approachable people are likely to already have several close friends and will not have time for additional close friendships. (Time being finite, that can't be helped.) The shy people need an easy way to meet. One strategy might be for those who are more shy to specifically target other people who seem a bit shy. They are more likely to have the free time to cultivate a new close friendship.

Crunchy Frog said...

a few burgers and nestle a cold beer

Did you say burgers and Newcastle beer? It's ale, yes, I'm in.


I'll take you up on that, Chip.

Christy said...

As an extrovert I only understand the problem because I've been trained on Myers-Briggs.

Crunchy Frog said...

Also, I was thinking the other day that someone could make a good deal of money setting up an online dating site for people with extremely high IQs.

I wonder if anyone has tried setting up a Mensa Dating SIG.

Not real sure how successful it would be. Ms range from the "surprisingly normal" to "What color is the sky on your planet?"