Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Old friends, good times

As much as I like being a grown-up, it certainly does come with it's dark side. Sometimes that translates into crappy stuff like paying bills and spending all your time at work to make money to pay bills so you have a roof over your head... whatever. Roofs are nice and all, but my dream house is an Airstream trailer-- which are almost as pricey as a house, pricier in fact, compared to some housing markets! Which is why I'm equally ready to accept any small travel trailer. No really, not even a big one! My dream house travel trailer is also only 18-22 feet long!

Unfortunately, the vast majority of people I encounter have these insane notions that living well involves some sort of house that does not come with wheels. Since I live in an area that still has much rural property, I do know a significant number of folk who live in pre-fabricated "mobile" homes...but even they insist that even though their homes came with wheels, those wheels need to go away after the house has been properly put in place.

So basically, what I'm saying, is that instead of living in a travel trailer that I can pull with my Jeep Cherokee, I live in a house. With a roof, and a toilet that is connected to the city sewer.


Jeesh, the things we do for love.

Fortunately, I really really really like my job. So most of the time I don't mind spending most of the week at work, making money.

I work closely with people though. Women, actually. And we are a complex, and often depressing and snarky lot. Most women know this about themselves and actually don't really like spending time with more women. I hear it all the time! "I don't really like women." But we still find ourselves congregating with our own kind quite often. Because even though we know we're snarky and competitive, at least we understand us. As opposed to hanging out with boys-- which we find fairly simple to figure out, it's just that we have such a hard time accepting that they are really that simple! So there's always an element of "boys are stupid and they smell funny" in our minds, no matter how much we enjoy their company.

So anyway-- I work in a salon. I do nails. I spend my days in a very intimate setting with my clients. I literally hold peoples' hands for a living. Face to face, less than 2 feet apart, holding their hands and listening to whatever they have to say.

A lot of people and a lot of different types of people come through my life on a daily basis. Some of them feed my soul and enrich my life. Some of them feed off my soul and drain my will to live. But it's never boring! And I only see each person for an hour or two at a time, so it's easy enough (usually) to shake it off and get back in the groove.

So going to work to make money is rarely a downside to being a grown up for me.

The part that sucks is that it takes so much time to make the money. So by the time you make the money and get the bills paid and figure out if you have any left over to do fun stuff with-- you don't have any time to do fun stuff because it's time to go back to work to make more money.

Now that gets to be irritating!

But that's not what I was talking about. I was talking about the dark side of being a grown up, and I wasn't going to go on a rant about the obvious. I was going to speak philosophically.

Part of developing wisdom is realizing that as you age, fewer and fewer things still come in black and white. As you get older and fill your head with more knowledge and experience you gain maturity and wisdom but suddenly you discover that it gets harder and harder to take a hard stance on issues that require taking a side.

Which means when it comes to friends, you will either have very few, or you learn to be very forgiving.

Because your friends will do very stupid things throughout their lives. They will do things that you do not approve of and it will be up to you to determine if your disapproval weighs more than your friendship.

Let me just say: Disapproval is a cold companion-- and she won't hang out with you or take you to lunch or loan you $20 when you wallet gets stolen or hike 40 miles into the wilderness with you. So before you choose Disapproval over your friends, you might want to take a minute to seriously consider what Disapproval has ever done for you.

I learned a long time ago that I cherish my friends well and above the company of Disapproval. I'm already holding plenty of grudges (and believe me, I have a death grip on a few of them!) and my hands are kinda full with those. So my friends really have to screw up big time for me to walk away from them.

I can only hope that my friends know this about me and are able and willing to extend the same amnesty to me and whatever I might do that causes them weigh their friendship against their disapproval.

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