Had a dream last night that led me to think. Not sure why, usually my dreams are easily dismissed. But for whatever reason this one reminded me of what I am now. The dream was about the house warming for our new home. We were having a party and the people I cared about most were there (wife, sister, brother-in-law and parents), but there was also this one friend I haven’t chatted with in a over a year. A good friend I missed. Also at the party were a bunch of Tiana’s “friends” (quotations because they were make believe dream people). Made me realize I am the crustiest bastard I know. And got me thinking about my friendships of the past.
When I was a kid, I was never all that popular. There was a year or two in elementary school when I had a good group of friends, but by the end of sixth grade I was down to a select group. Funny thing is my best friends always moved away.
My first best friend was Brent, he and I would meet on this relationship level on and off for a while. He was the kid across the street, and we became close very young. His parents separated and moved out of the house, he ended up at different schools and we connected again in junior high. Then he moved to Toronto and we lost touch after a couple of years. We found each other again in Lethbridge in our university years, he hung out with me until he found new friends. We weren’t really on the same page. Now he is a religious zealot and we definitely wouldn’t see eye to eye. Funny though he was my first friend, and we always had a ton of fun. He was the guy who introduced me to pot (the only drug I ever used) on his only trip to Calgary. I don’t think I miss him now but hey we were good friends, we just drifted apart.
The rest of elementary included my friends Darren, whose Dad was transferred eight hours north, we saw each other once more and that was that. My friend Mark S, he and I got our ear pierced at the same time and had matching earings (remember we were like 10, seemed way cooler of an idea then). Mark moved to another area. We didn’t really talk again, in fact we went to the same high school and I don’t think he ever realized who I was at that point. My friend Alan was my best friend in fourth grade, he was a cool guy. When he came to the school, I volunteered to show him around. He liked basketball and wrestling and I have no idea what we had in common. He moved away too. See a theme. I promise I wasn’t driving them away.
In junior high I met an awesome friend in Ryan Simmons. Ryan and I did a ton together we were inseparable. We had sleepovers all the time. He was a music and art guy, still is. I was a sports guy but we met in the middle over Monty Python. This friend I alienated, always regretted that. I have him as a Facebook friend, and he seems cool. At some point in our last year of junior high school, I thought I saw a chance to make a social climb, so I took it but it meant being a dick to Ryan. I am really good at being a dick, so my best childhood friend and I were no more. I wonder if we would still get along. He does some cool stuff in film and the arts and I turned into a schmuck of a construction worker.
In High School my best friend was another Marc. Hated the guy when I met him, played hockey with him. His Dad was the coach, and I really didn’t like the coach that year. Marc and I came together because our parents were friends, and I got dumped at his house one halloween. He and I got in a fist fight and from then on were best friends. We spent a ton of time together, not sure when we drifted apart but he had a family young. We are still in touch but I think on a political level I would have to kill him to shut him up. Was a good friend for me and always backed me up.
In between these best friends were a one or two people who were friends but hardly enough for me to even have a good sized birthday party. In twelfth grade (Marc had graduated) I spent my lunch hour in the library with a couple other guys, didn’t even see them outside of school. I was always picked on and an outsider but really by high school I didn’t actually care what people thought.
As an adult I have had very few friends. In University I was pretty popular always had lots of friends to hang out with, but no really substantial friends. I tried getting along with people at work but those for the most part didn’t work out. One guy at work I really like he has a lovely wife and a cute daughter and we get along great. He lives an hour away and we are both homebodies.
My best friend is my wife. We spend a lot of time together. It is really great to have that relationship but I think a guy needs friends. When I met my wife, there was this awesome girl who sat behind my family at the WHL teams games. She had a distinct laugh and my Mom felt like she would be a good prospect for me. We never dated but my Mom was right she was a hell of a prospect as a friend. We always laughed and had fun. I really enjoyed my time with this lady. For her birthday party a group of her friends met for a drink and Despicable Me. That was a lot of fun. I think over the next little while she became my first adult best friend. She called me with a couple of boy problems and I cheered her on. I even was invited to her convocation when she completed her masters. She has a cool life, she goes all the places in the world I dreamt I would go when I was young, but realized I wasn’t adventurous enough to actually do. So a friend to live vicariously through. However at some point we both got caught up in our significant others and lost touch. So we haven’t shared a drink and a laugh in a long time.
So here I stand, able to tally my friend, through 31 years of life, on two hands. Didn’t even need my toes. My wife has more current friends than I have had my entire life. She talks about all these people from her past, its pretty awesome. A lot of those people she is still connected to now, they chat once in a while. I however have lost contact with everyone over time. It started with everyone moving away from me when I was young. Then everyone found out what a complete asshole I am, and now they run away. And while my dream made me think of this seemingly sad fact, I realize that my life has turned out for the better. While I have one friend from my adult years I hope I will reconnect with soon, I am actually very content with my wife and the friendship she provides. I tell her jokes that I wouldn’t dare tell anyone else, and she laughs at them like I am actually funny. Seems like being a crusty prick has actually worked out just fine!