This is an ode to friendship.
While voting today I met an old friend. I was just about to leave the polling place as I ran into him. We’ve known eachother since primary school, so we go way back, but still connect. We caught up on how we are doing in life, and walked a bit with each other as we walked home. We’re both doing well and that makes me glad. I’m going to text him later to see when we can hang out again.
It’s nice to have friends. I have just bought Dale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People, and have read the first few pages. Up until now, Carnegie argues for not scorning, and trying to look at the position of the person you’re about to confront, to see what he wants. Then you can adjust your strategy to persuade the other person to see your view.
That’s politics in its purest form. That’s how you get your way. It’s not manipulative per se, as it’s more about establishing a mutual understanding.
Mutual understanding is important. We are humans who bond over that which is mutual, such as family bonds, shared political views, suffering through the same educational institution or watching a game together. Lately I’ve been hanging out with a guy who lives across my street, who is very much on the same level as me. We talk about philosophy, politics and the greatest emotion of all: love. We understand each other very well. We truly connect. He even gave me his shoes when my feet were full of blisters from walking in my new ones.
I have another friend who gave me shoes. The shoes belonged to his father, who fought cancer. The shoes have holes at the toes but they are Nike’s and they walk as if you’re walking on a cloud. I walk on them daily. I now have new shoes that I have to walk in, so I’ll take the Nike’s with me in case I get sore feet. Every time I wear those shoes I’m reminded of the two years that we spent in the same class, and the remaining years when we just went longboarding and partying and listening to hip-hop. This guy is one of the best speakers I know, and always has a well-thought out opinion ready. He’s analytical and has lately been trying to go deeper on an emotional level, which is commendable.
There’s another guy who I easily get on emotional levels with. He lives far away now, but we make a point of it to see each other from time to time. I couldn’t make it to his birthday party, which left me feeling a bit sour. If I had just planned my schoolwork better I might’ve gone and seen him again. I called him up and apologized, and said we’d go out soon, after I get my salary. He’s great with money, rarely spends anything but is still mostly content with life and that’s something I can learn from. He does sometimes admit to not being able to accept situations, so that’s something that I might learn him, if I know how.
Last but not least, there’s this last guy I want to tell you about. He’s very good with computers. We watch movies or eat pizza and converse (while having a cigarette). We converse about the weirdest things sometimes, but that’s fun, since you’re then in a place where everything goes and no idea is too crazy. It’s a very associative way of talking and I like having those talks with him. The last time we talked, we talked about faith and treating your body right, as well as the manosphere and what makes a good man. We share that we’re both into self-improvement. He stopped smoking weed around the same time as me, so we have that mutual experience – talking about missing it, not missing it, drawbacks, positive moments, everything goes.
That was it. I have to get back to writing my essay now. But If you’re a (potential) friend and you’re reading this, I’m always up for a cup of coffee! I spend my times mostly in Gouda or Utrecht, but I’m up to travel. After I get my salary, of course.