Home » Culture Shock » Will You Be My Friend?

Will You Be My Friend?

I’ve heard people say after moving to a new place that they’re “out of practice” with making new friends. I can’t sympathize, as I was never in practice. I am mind-bogglingly craptacular at making new friends. It’s not that I’m a bad friend – no more than other people – because once I’ve made a friend, I tend to keep them pretty well.  It’s reaching that point where a relationship goes deeper than a “good morning” or “how about that rain?” that I struggle with.  I never know what to say!  I think I sometimes come off as snobby or in my own world because I go absolutely quiet when I’m around someone I want to befriend. I analyze my words. I try to think of that magic way to signal potential friendship without coming off as too-eager or crazy.  And so I never say anything. I yearn with my eyes.  Like an anime character, or a dog that wants table scraps. Like me. Oh god, just like me.  Please? 

When I examine my friendships, nearly always they began by someone else introducing us.  There are a few exceptions – some naturally friendly people manage to blow away my BS Calm Cool Collected vibe and get me to acting more like me, but for the most part, a mutual friend has talked me up, promoting my positives like a marketer with a difficult-to-sell Toyota model.  And if a friendship starts at work?  GOOD LORD. It takes me FOREVER to relax into my usual sarcastic self, and usually through sharing a common enemy.  Thank God for common enemies. They forge people together like iron.

Here are some friend pickup lines I’ve used in the past:

  • “So we’ve sat next to each other in class for a while now, and you seem to be pretty cool, so I think we should take this show on the road.” Erica H, you probably remember this one.
  • “So YOU’RE the one who has my Into the Woods VHS!!!” Sarah M, a previous friend of a friend.
  • “I feel that we need to drink together. But not at work.” JSahr, after we had sat cube-to-cube for a year without having spoken save polite nothings. My then-boss introduced us to work together on a project. Thanks Gwen!
  • “I’m going to have a mental breakdown on your bed, so you should probably learm my last name. It’s Sheppard.” Ah, future college roommate!

See?  AWKWARD.  I’m just glad that the above-friends managed to give me a chance despite myself.

Anyway, I’ve been thinking about friends and friendships recently because it’s been a month since I left Florida, and I am beginning to genuinely miss people.  It’s gone from “well, it’s like they’re on vacation” to “oh my god I am going to struggle to see these people again”, and it’s starting to hit me. I miss people.  I miss getting to know people better.  Texting and Facebook? Not the same.

I’m the new girl in town, here.  I know about three people.  And that’s not a problem; I’m not angsting about it or feeling lonely quite yet. But I can feel the old panic start to set in: Like me. Oh god, just like me.  Please? 

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5 thoughts on “Will You Be My Friend?

  1. Bahahaha! When I read your first pick-up line, before I realized you mentioned my name, I was TOTALLY thinking, “OMG…I think that’s the line she used on me, just not in a ‘real’ class.”

    By the way, this blog post makes me think you might enjoy reading “MWF Seeking BFF: My Yearlong Search for a New Best Friend” by Rachel Bertsche.

    • You’ll be pleased to know that that’s the first (and last) time I’ve used that line on anyone. See? You were more than a notch on my friends list! :p

      I will have to check it out! I think I saw that blog advertised.

  2. Oh geeze, I can relate. I think all of my friendships have started with the other person making the first move. I don’t have huge number of friends, but if someone’s willing to put up with my awkwardness, they’re probably a keeper. Quality over quantity 🙂

  3. After reading a few of your posts I imagine we could potentially be good friends if we ever had the opportunity. Thanks go to Erica for sharing this on facebook. Sometimes it’s positively crazy how small the world is.

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