If it weren’t for Facebook, I wouldn’t have a social life. Next week a friend is hosting a Passions party – I’m not sure I’ll go to that because I doubt I will have the need for any .. um .. products for the foreseeable future. Tonight is a get-together with the group I met at the reunion plus a couple others that couldn’t make it then. Also tonight is also another party with another group of people. Busy, busy.
Seeing all these old friends again has been great, but it inevitably brought up a few things that I (thought I) had forgotten.
Here’s the scenario. You and your used-to-be-BFF back when you were in junior high decide to hang out one day your senior year. She has a boyfriend who is a few years older who is in the military but is home on leave. The three of you hang out by the lake and drink beer and then you offer a little something-something that you got from your brother (who, because this is fiction, shall be named …. David. Yeah, that’s a good name). So you toke up a little bowl and then the guy decides your UTBBFF needs to go home because she’s a little drunk and a little stoned. He drives to her house where she proceeds to fall out of the car and he half-walks, half-carries her to the door. He comes back to the car and says, “I’m hungry. Do you want to stop at McDonalds?” and you say yes because, hey, free food. You enjoy a pleasant conversation and a Big Mac and he takes you home. No big deal, right?
Your mother meets you at the door. And interrogates you as to your whereabouts, using language that is terrifying. In the next few minutes, you learn your UTBBFF got busted by her mother and accused you of drugging her. UTBBFF’s mom calls your mom and threatens to go to the police and then she takes her precious princess to the emergency room because GOD ONLY KNOWS what was in that tiny, tiny little bowl of dope. Your mother focuses on the pot like a drug-sniffing dog and demands to know where you got it. You hem and haw A LOT because you don’t want to get David in trouble but then you realize your mother is about to skin you alive, so you give up David and hope for the best. (You also call him later to warn him and to apologize in advance).
Poor UTBBFF was out of school for the next few days and never spoke to you again. You tried to track her down to ask her WTF that was all about, but she avoids you and then you decide to drop it. Because she was a used-to-be BFF, not a current one, and you decide it’s not worth a confrontation.
Twenty-five years later, she sends you a friend request on Facebook. Once you realize who it is, you accept the request out of curiosity, but then you remember that day when you were seniors and she threw you under the bus because she was afraid of her mother. That’s when it hits you – you’re not angry anymore, but you’ve never really forgotten it, either. It was a lesson in friendship – a hard lesson – and the first time you ever really understood that most people are not particularly brave and will choose the easy thing, which is usually to blame someone else.
Today’s topic is: Do people really change? Sure, we all did dumb stuff in high school (and even beyond), but is it possible to change the essence of who you are? Does that follow us forever, no matter how we behave in the future?