Monday, February 11, 2008

friendship applications

Besides watching game shows, another little "hobby" I've picked up since moving to MI is perusing craigslist. It started out innocently enough, looking at job postings. But then my morbid sense of human nature took over and I started reading the "casual encounters" section. For those not in the know, this is the section where people want discreet, experimental sex. It's slightly less entertaining than the personals in the free papers, as those generally involve extreme fetishes, but it's something to do while the game shows play in the background.

Today I ventured into a new section, the "strictly platonic"s. These are people looking for others to just hang with. Truthfully, they are depressing. Not all of them, but some. There was one looking for a BFF because she doesn't have any friends except her husband and other friends she's had have hurt her. Still more common are SAHMs looking for some sort of outlet. Mostly there are women who have a husband or boyfriend that doesn't like to do things, like going to the movies or out to eat or anything that involves leaving the house. Ladies, I have been that girl. It sucks. It sucks big time, and it is really hard to deal with.

So why don't I answer these ads? I don't have any of my own friends here yet, and I do spend my unemployed days watching game shows and reading craigslist. Why not then? Well, I don't think I can magically be someone's BFF by answering an ad. (And why have all her past friends hurt her? Is it something she's doing?) I don't have kids, so the SAHM ads are out, as they are looking for someone for a playdate.

As for the girls that I once was? Well, even though I feel for them, a vast majority of the ads require pictures for the "applicant" to even be considered. Pictures? Since when is friendship based on pictures? I do not judge my friends on their looks, and I expect the same. Maybe some of my friends aren't glamorous model types, but the fact that they are my friends says that I think they are beautiful. I could be the coolest person in the world, but these craigslist people would never know it because they are accepting or rejecting me based solely on my outward appearance.

I will admit that there is something to be said for the snap judgment that is made upon meeting someone new. Maybe they are wearing a t-shirt of a band you also like, or there is some other obvious sign that you have something in common. Maybe they are doing something interesting with their hair and you like their style. Maybe you can hear them talking about something you might be interested in. There is always something that draws in (or repels) a potential friend. However, this is different than requesting a picture before a new friend is even considered. A picture is a moment in time. When you meet the person in real life, chances are they will be slightly different - wearing different clothes or even with a different facial expression.

The best way to make a friend is not to judge their appearance, but to get to know them. Talk to them. Read their writings (ahem). Just spend time with them. Guess what? I've made many a friend by exchanging emails, without having seen a picture. I've never once been disappointed when I finally saw what they looked like. I'm not that chick, but apparently these chicks exist.

You know what? I don't want to be friends with someone like that.

8 comments:

jessabean said...

I totally judged you when I met you...by your AWESOME tatts!

viciousrumours said...

I'm having that whole problem now. No one to hang with. I've been where I am for five years and have only met one person I really click with. Well except for the people in the blog-o-sphere...I've never even considered a personal ad for friends..hmmm...I wonder what I would write....

flutter said...

ugh, ads for friends...

super des said...

jess, I judged you as well. By your awesome shoes.

vr - I was considering writing one myself, just to see what kind of responses I'd get.

flutter, it's craigslist. you can get a cheap dresser, a job, casual sex, and friends. Neat!

Average Jane said...

I wouldn't consider Craigslist to be a reasonable friend source, but you might want to see if the local bloggers in your area ever get together. I've met some really cool people by attending a couple of different blogger get-togethers. Of course, you have to be one of those "don't mind walking into a roomful of strangers" types, but I imagine you probably are if you were okay with BlogHer.

super des said...

I don't have a car. That presents difficulties with meetups.
:)

Laura said...

I judge people by the warp speed at which they ship awesome jewewlry.

YOU PASS!!

I thought of you today.. Stella was sitting around stringing craft beads on pipe cleaners and asking me if I would like to buy one.
Are you hiring?

super des said...

Hmmmm. Is she potty trained yet? I don't due diaper duty.

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