i’m not sure where along this road i started getting so lucky with friends. upon going to high school i had to split from almost every friend i had because of zoning. at this new school i remember being told about how freshman were considered “wall huggers” which i thought was silly until the first week of school happened, and i meekly walked from class to class with my shoulder grazing the red tiles of the hallway walls. everyone seemed huge. like how kids picture medieval times before they go back all grown up. the halls were huge. the kids were huge. and i had no friends.

just as summer was starting after sophomore year, i had a lucky break. i had been the kid who could hang out with every group. i could jump from table to table in the lunchroom and sit at a new desk in each class and be able to joke with the person next to me, but after volleyball practice i headed home and hung out with my parents every night, all night. everything happened on one night. twist of fate. i was hanging out with two friends from class and they got invited to see a movie and said i could tag along if i wanted. of course i said yes. i had nothing else to do. it was time to go to the movie and they both backed out. boy trouble i think. i decided to still go because i knew i would know one girl. when i showed up, the entire row of twenty something seats were filled with the group i would be friends with for the next 7 years. i still love all of them. i really don’t know how i would have turned out without them.

in college it is more like my early years of high school. i have friends in all different groups and interests. through work, school, being around lawrence for too long. it’s amazing how people can be so different whereas in high school you all want to be the same. or at least not stand out too much. in college, standing out it seems is what everyone is aiming for. not necessarily for the attention of others, but subsequent to trying to become who you want to become. unabashed drive to do things.

there’s a forward motion to it. it’s exciting. adventurous even.

a few days ago i went to a going away party for my good friend stu. he has a plan to canoe down the Mississippi river to raise money for his uncle with cancer. he’s been fixing up his boat for months just for this trip, and has been working on relations with the american cancer society. his party was also part photography gallery, too. 60 self portraits. he’s been working on this project for 2 years now. he went around his house explaining each picture, listening to the stories behind them. i had even been present in some of the stories. there’s a picture of stu sitting in a small dark tunnel. one night my sophomore year of college, stu broke his wrist falling 20 feet into a sewer opening. we had been trying to get into allen field house through the underground tunnels. what a crazy night. matt and i stayed up until morning with him eating pizza while the drugs wore off, laughing about his unconscious flirtations with the nurses.

i have the best friends.