Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Things I've learned from my friend Shawn

I've recently had a crisis of friendship with one of my oldest and bestest buddies, Shawn. That girl and I have been through it all together. We met in June of 1986, the day I showed up in her neighborhood. My mother had moved across the street from her and I followed a few months later. By virtue of our ages (same-same) and our grades in school (also same-same) our parents decided we'd become fast friends. A decision I'm sure Shawn's parents have regretted over the years. hee. Too late now, Tom and Shanon! *wicked laugh*

Anyway, I've always been The Caller of the dynamic duo. Always. Shawn rarely calls, I always do. That's just the way it's been lo these 20 years. In the last two or three years, though, I've decided I'm not okay with my title and I let her know about it. In the most mature way, of course. A caustic voice mail message on her cell phone. (Oh totally.  I'm a grown-up.)

While thinking back on our years together as chums, dredging up every instance wherein I was the one who called and she failed to call me back (boohoo), I couldn't help but remember some of the things she's taught me.

Heck, if it weren't for Shawn I might never have known that purple and lavender aren't the same color. That bedposts can double as microphones and pound cake isn't just a cake. Because of my friend Shawn I know that the best place for teaspoons is on the counter in a spooner, and that hash browns should be brown.

Coffee tastes best after 10 minutes in the cup, and every cup has a saucer. Pop cans have many uses (eek) and a good hairspray is hard to find. Roots should match their ends, and houses should be clean. Carrot juice really does have a place in society.

Dogs should be BIG.

Cats should be outside.

Always have a pre-func. Soccer is not for wimps. Bleach doesn't kill rose bushes, but Marlboro kills people. Bitter Girl can't stay bitter forever. Little girls need ballet shoes. Vegetables can taste good without Ranch, and sour cream mixed with salsa is a superior chip accompaniment.

Mall-walkers don't have to have grey hair. But if they do have greys, we can cover them up so nobody's the wiser. Because of Shawn I know about Riyadh and Dhahran (she lived there!), Nostradamus, The Spinning Song, poodles, lipstick, the yen, Black Beauties, Gevalia Appel Kaffe Kaka, sesame oil, green bud (ignore that one, Mom and anyone from church) and MGD. Oh, and sometimes choking is funny.

Soooooo, granted... lots of the things I've learned from Shawn are bad. But that's a two-way street - I'd hate to see the list of things I taught her. yeek. But hey! Who's more prepared for our kids' teen years than us? Nobody, that's who. We've been there, done that. Thanks to our checkered pasts we're ready. All over it. White on rice, y'might say.

Long story short? I love that girl. She's my oldest bestest chum on God's earth and I love her. She knows how it is with me and my mom. She knows when to shut up and listen, and when to offer unsolicited advice. She knows I know she knows I know she's smarter than me, but she's too classy to ever say it. Y'know what? If she never calls me again I'll still go right on loving her like the sister she is.

I might leave a paper sack of flaming dog doo on her front stoop, but I'll still love her.

2 comments:

kathleen said...

Oh, I nearly cried! I had a friend like that and we "divorced" about 5 years ago. It was like removing a cancerous body part, you know it had to go, but you miss it something terrible. :(

Nicole said...

You have reminded me in such a poignant way of the reasons why I love my dearest and oldest friend. You've expressed it so clearly as to why we still do the obligatory things that we do to keep these relationships kicking and breathing no matter how taxing or annoying these obligations become. Your post makes me want to call up my best friend - and leave her yet another message - that she may or may not return! I hope you share your post with Shawn - you've encouraged me to do the same.

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