BEST FRIEND?

Who’s your best friend?  If you’re with a friend, chatting, don’t ask the question.  I was asked, recently, by a friend.

Having attended 11 schools in 12 years, I never stayed long enough to have a best friend — or rather to be someone else’s best friend.  Anyone would probably have been  my “best” and only friend.

Oh, I blossomed to a degree during graduate school,  but coming down with borderline personality proclivities limited me.  When age cured my borderline tendencies, I was left with avoidant preferences (like staying home and talking to the ethernet.)  If you should be asked who’s your best friend, some might say Jesus, some might cite their husband/wife, some might recall a dear friend whom they  still cherish, but who moved far away and recently dropped them  from their Christmas card list.

I remember in the seventh grade pouring over the social pages  of our newspaper, trying to discover parties being given by acquaintances to which I hadn’t been invited.  Guess that was my masochistic stage.  Being an incest survivor didn’t help one helluva bunch.  And what about  a good friend plus a new good friend?  What criteria is used to judge “best?”  Of course the role  of neediness weighs in.  There are a couple of folks in constant  need, and despite all the talk of always being there for others, with staunch emotional support, what if they drain me?  I think my soul has shriveled up with old age.  But I’m not needy!  Don’t you worry about me!  (You’re supposed to laugh here.)

Back to my friend, maybe my best friend,  who originally asked me.  Faced with that unexpected question, I immediately flashed on how many friends she has, and constantly makes.   She’s an    incredibly vivacious, lovable woman who brightens her environment.  I imagined replying that she was my best friend, all the while knowing that would put me in a vulnerable light.  Something like, “You poor thing, if you think I’m your best friend, I’d rate you as maybe one of my thirty.”  Of course my wretched ego couldn’t handle that. Not from my best friend!

O, I forgot to mention that along the years I’ve also become a tad obsessive, so I plan to send her a copy of this post, (My best friend doesn’t visit my blog, nor my next-to-best one either).

About Nan Mykel

I used to think I would be a child prodigy, but then I got old. Formerly I had fantasies of rubbing elbows with cultural and academic leaders but that did not come to pass because I did not become a cultural or academic leader or any other kind of leader, for that matter. I am not even an "Alpha Dog," a term learned from a friend who had to become "Alpha Dog" in order to influence her own pet. (When gazes lock, she never looks away.) For years I expected to become a published author, but in passing I could not avoid the fact that I had little to contribute to the world's bulging dumpsters. I'm embarrassed to report that I also considered my primary process artistic productions powerful, rather than mildly neurotic. Which is not to say that I disrespect myself, only that I am beginning to doubt my potential for making a mark on the world. If I focus on strict self discipline I may be able to keep my garbage removed on a weekly basis, to keep the kitty box changed, the clothes cleaned, the dog watered, fed and walked, but that just catches me up to the starting mark again. When writing I physically grapple with words, wrestling them from their indifference into attempted chunks of awareness. I sit heavily on my chair; I breathe in artificially cooled air; my ear drums note the tap tap of the keyboard and the steady uninterrupted sound of the air conditioner, What is that sound? The roar of the ocean from 30 yards away...Inside, my thoughts are are balls in an electronic game machine, bouncing hither and yon from lever to lever. I am a little grim and intent until I recall a dream related by a black man in the prison where I once worked. He said that when he was a small boy, back home, he dreamed he was standing on his front porch pissing, and that he suddenly found himself pissing stars...
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1 Response to BEST FRIEND?

  1. Shawna says:

    I can completely identify with this post. Really, my kids are my best friends.

    Like

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