What's a friend anyhow?
Today I spent most of the day with a friend, a guy that 25 years ago was merely an acquaintance. Our circles crossed like a bizarre venn diagram of mutual friends and the parties that accompanied. 25 years ago we shared little in common, but the sometimes natural click of mutual personalities. Today we live 2144 miles away from each other and haven’t seen each other in 25 years. And yet. We are friends. Good ones.
Sound bizarre? Maybe. But it’s real and it’s cool and it’s a display of the best parts of the internet.
The friend mentioned is Christopher Eriksen. He’s roughly my age, has 3 great kids as well as an awesome wife whom I’ve only met in person today. Besides his kids wondering, “Who is this weirdo?”, Chris and Hilary and I fell in like we hang out every weekend. It made me wonder, “What does it mean to be a friend?”
I’ve documented often the value and awesomeness of my friendships. I have the luxury of working with many of my best friends, and though sometimes challenging, I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I’ve also talked about how we must work on our friendships to keep them nourished.
Today, I was amazed by the power of the internet in forming friendships. Amazed at how if we give people a chance, we can create great relationships. How we can get to know people and become more than we are through that effort.
In 2008 or so, Chris and I reconnected on Facebook, and for whatever reason, we kept conversations going. Small interactions that stacked like bricks. Through that, today on a beautiful boat ride, we talked about shit, and it was great. Like the old friends we are.
I can’t tell you who you’ll be friends with, or if you need friends, or if you are even looking. What I will tell you is that if you open yourself to people, and the possibilities, the results are usually great.