What I Should Have Said

Earlier tonight, I left a comment on someone’s blog. The topic of her post and my reply was wanting more friends. Here’s my comment:

When I was in my early 20s, I once told someone “I have no friends”. He questioned this and asked me if there was anyone I could borrow money from.

I could have borrowed money from him. But clearly we had different definitions of “friendship”.

As soon as I wrote that, I realized the last sentence wasn’t needed. Without that last sentence, my comment might have had a koan-like quality. I can’t change it now, but maybe I could ask the blog’s owner to strike that last sentence? And maybe do some more trimming:

I once told someone “I have no friends”. He asked me if there was anyone I could borrow money from.

I could have borrowed money from him.

Much cleaner. It’s probably greeting card-worthy.

But wait a minute! The point of your comment was to share a thought with someone who was feeling low. You thought you could give her a different perspective on making and keeping friends. That was the important thing, right? Stop worrying about how you said it. It’s not as if people are going to be reading these blog posts 1000 years from now, you neurotic jerk! In fact, you could have been even more explicit — talked about staying in touch with people you like, pointing out that having three very close friends is more than many people have, you know, that kind of thing.

Ok, I get your point. Sorry to make such a big deal about it. But just in case people are reading this stuff 1000 years from now, maybe I could tweak it a little? 

4 thoughts on “What I Should Have Said

  1. That’s a very funny equation, money:friendship. I’m sure that you pleased all of the money-lenders; posthumously and/or alive; but have you really gained any friends thereby.

    • Keep in mind that this was a conversation circa 1972 between a college kid and an older guy, neither of whom had any income to speak of, so finance capitalism or interest rates weren’t on the agenda.

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