Song to say goodbye

It's the weekend at last! And a pensive one at that as I was set to thinking: It's painful yet bittersweet when friends come and go through different stages of your life.

To the outside world, I may come across as friendly and chatty but I don't make friends easily. For me it's always a very personal experience - friends are the people who'll listen to us when we're in need and kick our ass when we've done wrong. It's a class that is different from family where there is filial piety and obligation and deeper emotions when it concerns lovers/companions/partners. Unlike these, friends are people that you can be the most comfortable with.

This year, I've already had a few new friends leave. Oh, the kick-ass ass farewell parties that've been thrown! I know it's selfish to say so but why is it that when you've discovered that you share a lot more in common and have grown closer to people, it's time for them to move on? It's bloody unfair! So there are telephones, the email, skype, carrier pigeon, whatever...and nothing, absolutely nothing beats having a person around to shoot the breeze with.

On the flip side of that, are the friends that've become more of an acquaintance. I guess, I'm lucky in some ways. Over the years, I've maintained an intimate group of friends from different places in my life who've become so much a part of my little world that at times I can't imagine being without them. Then there are the relegated friends.

Relegated? How do you relegate friends? For me, it's a sanity saving thing. Have you ever had the feeling after hanging out with certain people over a period of time that you don't really know them after all? Or that they are hiding things from you? Who really knows anyone anymore? I've always been curious about people and I'm a constant seeker of answers - I'll prod, question, research and generally be a bloody pain in the ass until I figure you out.

What I really, really hate is when people are not honest. What is there to hide anyway? Every one of us comes with baggage and a few skeletons that we do not wish to reveal but excessive secrecy is ludicrous. Granted, your skeletons are yours to closet but please, at least be open enough to express an honest opinion and share when you have to. Have an opinion, make a statement, ask a stupid question! Friends being friends, will naturally make fun and tease mercilessly but no one will think less of you - not unless you make it so. I've come across annoying friends like that - fence sitters, you say you have an open mind. You don't.

Then there are the competitive ones. While I respect the need to improve oneself, it's an awfully tiresome act to keep wanting to best your buds. And the contrary ones who'll say one thing and do another...what the hell?!

People have told me that sometimes friends distance themselves when things get tough or when there are disagreements. But shouldn't things be ironed out? If everyone distanced themselves when there is adversity, won't we all be lonelier? Then what is the point of having friends? If you cared enough about the people around you, won't you want to call them out to talk? Not everything leads to a confrontation but sometimes confrontations are necessary to get things out in the open. Only then will you know whether you truly have a friend.

But for every fair-weather friend encountered, it's heartening to know that there are real friends that you can rely on no matter what. Ones who can be counted on to tell you that you look fat in that outfit, listen to you yammer, give you a shoulder to cry on or faint when you tell them of your latest exploit :o)

In this, I concur with the novelist, George Eliot when she says, "Perhaps the most delightful friendships are those in which there is much agreement, much disputation, and yet more personal liking."

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Ever prodded a sleeping dragon, only to have it whip up and bite you in the ass? Well, neither have I. But I advocate that you should try everything...once ;P


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