Goodnight friendship.

“Moses supposes his toeses are roses, but Moses supposes erroneously.”

-Singing in the Rain

Suppose you and I went out on a walk one cool April night. Suppose it was on a dark night that we decided to circle around the entire residential side of campus and run into spiders, dancing college students, and beavers.

Suppose along the way you asked me, “Suppose your boyfriend, your best friend, and me, we all suddenly called you up because we each had a problem. Who would you go to help first?”

After questioning you regarding the magnitude of those problems, in complete honesty, suppose I said “You.

Suppose you were very taken aback by this and asked me why. Suppose you wondered how little the other friends meant to me that I would put you first. Suppose you considered yourself relatively insignificant in comparison to the other two and were thus surprised by my answer.

I don’t suppose you remember that at all now, do you?

What do you suppose that it means when I say no, you are not insignificant compared to them? That someone who was first much closer to me does not deserve to be put last in my thoughts?

Do you suppose I was around you for any reason other than because I genuinely enjoyed your company? Do I ask you for anything—food, homework, advice—without offering it in kind? Do I ask you for anything and simply leave you once I have received it?

Did I ever lead you to physical or emotional pain or discomfort due to complete disregard for your feelings? Did you ever come to unequivocal harm under my hand?

You were first the most open, affable, strange, and charming person I had met here. Through you I met many, many other friends that I enjoy being around, but none so much as yourself.

I remember listening to you play Chopin at the piano, the time we stayed up all night and spent the early morning flinging cards all over the hallway, the Sunday breakfast with fried mantou, looking out of the clocktower, missing the bus after a long dinner, hot chocolate at midnight,  so many nighttime walks, the escapade through FAO Schwartz, missing the subway, wandering through the gallery of modern art, Central Park, trying on clothes at J Crew, eating a flaming ice cream, the bouquet of red and yellow ribbon roses on my desk, the Dickson laundry room social disaster, skipping class to explore the gorge behind Upson, running all the way to Balch Arch to hear my disastrous news and give me a place to cry, and the fact that you took almost an hour to bring me a cup of tea when I only mentioned that I had a sore throat. Yes, I still remember that, even if you don’t.

Maybe the time has passed for those things. Maybe they should just remain in my mind, in the past, as all good memories ought. Maybe we did end up growing apart.

I hope you don’t read this, because you shouldn’t need a second wake-up call. So I am putting this friendship to rest with a peaceful countenance. Good night.


~ by O'Brien on October 28, 2009.

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