Friday, August 27, 2010

Friendship take-a-way

I am having lunch today with two friends  - - - [Judi & MP] my nervousness reminded me of this post [below] from January.

And Judi just sent me this photo of our teeth which cracked me up.  Not sure why.  I'll blame it on the Nyquil.

THE POST:
I’m a compartment girl. Pretty sure I always have been. It’s not that I’m all that organized either. I just like that specific things have specific places for them. The sunglass place in my car - love it. The loose coin holder - fabulous. It’s the little things with me. . . . most of the time.

Last night in speaking [okay, texting] with a girlfriend she says, “It’ll be nice to meet your other friends and [gasp] even some of your family.” All of the sudden I felt nervous. Maybe even anxious about this “meeting”. odd. After a few minutes, I think I’ve figured out why.

[bear with me]

I love getting food “take-a-way” style. When you get things “to-go” you know your sticky rice will be in one container and your sugar encrusted orange chicken will be in another. In ordering a salad [even at McD's] to go, the dressing will always be in it’s own nesting area. Brilliant.

Now there are a few places that get it right even when dining “in”. KFC, for example. The divided plate. Awesome. One of the best inventions to date. Being able to eat heavily souped up gravied mashed potatoes with out the thought of cross-contamination into the mac-n-cheese . . . Pure bliss.
Heck they even get it right at public schools. No runny, soggy veggies migrate over into the beef [?] pasta layered thing. Incredible.
So - this is me and my [albeit lame] dilemma.

I like my different [groups] of friends. I like them in their own part of my divided plate. I’m worried that inner mingling of the groups would take away the unique flavor of each of them.

For the most part, I like to see my “work” / shopping friends only when I’m “working”. Seeing them in my doctor’s office or at the gym is odd.

The “inner circle” friends. Like my FAV 5 of friends. My backbone friends. Always building me up. Never threaten. Never feel the need to “one up” or intimidate. Lifelong friends. I’m most protective of this group. I keep this group separated like the bank notes in monopoly.

Email / social media friends. People I “know” only through email. {It’s not as bizarre as it sounds when you run an Internet based business.} Amazing how much you can get to “know” a person without having seen them or heard their voice.

My “boy”-like friends. These are my friends that are completely LOW-maintenance. The friends you can go 6 months without talking to and feel like it was yesterday. No drama here. The trick is to not have these friends mix with the “others” so they don’t know they really can forget your birthday and you truly won’t be mad.

Church friends - I like to see them at church. In a church setting. To see them at the gym when I’m in a bra top and little running shorts. Creeps me out. On the flip side. Seeing gym friends when I am properly dressed is weird too.

My social friends [mostly those whom I’ve gotten to know through the Pita’s work; spouses of employees or employees] . . . I don’t like them to know any of the above mentioned friends. They are typically a little “louder” than my friend "norm" and I worry they’ll be misunderstood by my “calmer” possibly more so called "grown-up" friends. But that's why I love them - they are a little loud and a lot of fun.

The "neighbor" friend is the one who gets to be nosey and see almost all of these different groups [in their given expensive or barely running cars] turn up to your home. These are the friends who think I have issues. ;) They are more comfortable seeing me in my "mom" role than my hosting a tri-nations rugby get together - [I "do it for the Pita"] / wife role.

Is this odd? Normal? Do you ever feel this way?

Are these groups meant to be mixed up like a casserole? I hate casseroles.

[Happy Friday!!] - Wish me luck. ;)

35 comments:

Claudia said...

HA! I never thought of it this way, but I like how that works.
I always mix my friends all up like a big casserole, and try to push them together but it really never works out.
Perhaps I should try your method.

Good luck, have a great lunch!

heather said...

Hapy Friday, Emz!

Friend casserole makes me nervous too. One of my friends (inner circle) refers to this as "when two worlds collide". I love your descriptions, they are spot on.

Don't worry though, everything will be fine. I threw a big "end of summer" party once and invited all my freinds and family on a whim. About a week before the big day, I started freaking out; I almost cancelled. Everything went peachy...the food and lots of alcohol may have helped. :)

Laura said...

Too funny...I kind of feel the same way. I remember trying to mix high school friends and University ones...not so good. We recently had a family/run group mix in..I don't think the family side could understand why we get so worked up about bad drivers, the flavor of GU, getting excited about running 27km etc.

Jon said...

I have different groups of workout friends that I dont even want them to mingle! I have my biker buddy dudes group, and I have my family friendly runners group. TOTALLY different circles and different attitudes.

Kovas Palubinskas said...

Oh man I'm jealous you have so many friends you need to keep them separated. You're like the UN of friendship. All the friends know the other groups exist, but if they ever got together, there'd be war.

Quinton J said...

Nice post. I like it. Well written. You're right...some friends should not be mixed together...like some foods. But also like some foods...you may surprise yourself sometimes on how good they are apart...but how amazing they are together. I say take a chance. Worst thing that can happen is never mix'em up again.

Her Name is Rio said...

In my world, it seems my friends are divided in how they refer to me. And of course, none of it was in my control. My childhood friends call me by my childhood nickname. A work colleague tried to use it once and it stopped me dead in my tracks. I work under my maiden name because that's how I was initially licensed, etc. Home and family life, I'm known by my married name. It used to bug me...but not anymore.

Matty O said...

Man can you say OCD?

I understand though. I can relate to the church group more than the rest. But I am a simple guy, never dress to impress so I am never ashamed of how people see me... H on the other hand, she gets embarassed by me A LOT.

Didn't know the other half was a rugby man??? I was gonna ask you what the heck he does, he is FRICKIN HUGE!

Amy said...

It's definitely easier to keep friends separated. I used to want to mix everyone up so I could have all of my people together in one place, but it just doesn't work...or to make it work, means a lot of work for me, and if I'm with friends, isn't the point to relax?

Have a great weekend!

Jeff - DangleTheCarrot said...

You gave that one some real deep thought Mr Jack Handy! Very impressive!

You should just take the plunge and become a triathlete and you won't have time for anybody but your training friends who just happen to be along for the ride. Just one nice and neat compartment.

Andrew Opala said...

The mixing friends doesn't work for me - let us know how it worked.

I have air force friends, university friends, work friends, church friends, and people that pose as my family.

They DO NOT go together. I do not even try. When one of my University Professors asked "whose the old bag serving the ribs" at one of my BBQs about my mother-in-law ... the laser beams in my wife's head changed my opinion about mixing ... [and I also got a free hair removal on the back of my neck - bonus!]

misszippy said...

I think I'm similar. My husband and I like to have people over, but I've never taken the step to have a huge party, b/c I just don't think I want my friends from different worlds all in one place.

Karen R said...

I do not mix friends either!

For example, my "mommy" friends that have small children play a completely different role in my life than my "going out" friends. And my "going out" friends are different than my gay boyfriends. And then there are my lawyer work friends, and my internet friends, and childhood friends, etc.

Nobody gets mixed up in my world! And I agree, it would be strange :)

Allie said...

I just want to know, where does "internet girlfriend" fit into all this?

Seriously though, I used to be the same way (I don't have many friends in Oklahoma so it isn't an issue anymore), certain friends meeting could be a catastrophe. I also hate it when one of my friends doesn't like another one so if they never meet then I never have to worry about it.

TMB @ RACING WITH BABES said...

I hate casserole too. I have never been able to mix social circles. Then again, I really don't have that many friend. And most of them fall into the "boy"-like category anyway, so I am not really faced with this problem that often.

the one thing that always brings everyone together is a run.

Evolving Through Running said...

Interesting read. It wasn't a conscious decision on my part, but now that I think about it I tend to compartmentalize my friends as well, and never really let the groups intersect. Perhaps out of some subconscious concern that they'll find they like each other better than me and leave me behind? Have to ponder than some more.

Whatever you do, don't ever let your virtual friends overlap with your real/physical friends. The results could have space/time implications, not unlike crossing the streams in Ghostbusters :)

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

This is a really interesting post. One time my best friend since grade school was visiting and we had planned to go out one night with my best friend here, who happens to be someone I work with. I was really nervous about it, but I wasn't really quite sure why. But, they ended up liking each other and we all had a blast together. It was great!

Kelly Leigh said...

When I had groups of friends in America - they do not mix. Now that I am falling a bit short in the friend department I would reconsider my mixing policy.

Kelly Leigh said...

oh and ps. nice teeth.

Sarah said...

Haha!!! My friend Yvonne was just talking about this the other day. This friend she has known for years through work really wants to spend time with us, but she told him she doesn't overlap her circle of friends. Well, plus we do girl stuff. Hanging out with a guy in his 60's would be a little on the weird side for me.

Adrienne said...

I totally get this. I tend to be an "includer" but it comes back to bite me in the butt. I include all and have a great thing going then pretty soon everyone forgets it was ME that got them all together and suddenly I have to come up with something new because the old "group" is now not as exciting. Some friends know our history and "get us" more than others and we don't have to share them with everyone else. Some friends keep it "light" and sometimes we need that too. Some friends you want your kids to grow up and be like and some you don't ever want you kids to meet.
I think the important thing is if you are "You" wherever you are and if that means your wearing a different "hat" with different folks I think that is fine as long as they are all your "hats". If you have to change who "you" are to be with different groups than maybe there is a problem. Did this make any sense? This is how my brain works. I was dropped as a baby a lot I think.

Amanda - RunToTheFinish said...

i love being surrounded by those dearest to me, so I have often forced all my groups to meet and it's been wonderful

Christina said...

I like to keep people/friends separate.
Work friends - I'd rather see them at work/work-related events/work-related lunches. I don't feel comfortable seeing them on weekends for a movie. Heck, I went without seeing all but one this summer when school's out. And when I had to meet this work friend for lunch, my belly felt funny.
I like to keep my international friends separate from my running friends, my speech-pathology friends and my journalism friends. I even like to keep the family separated too. There is a reason why they don't already know each other - they just don't have things in common, so why force it?

ajh said...

Interesting. It can be odd to mix friends but I think it can work and prove to be quite fun. Good luck

Laurie said...

I definitely have different groups of friends that should never be mixed. I love your fear of church friends in your workout setting, not a big fan of that either.

Anne said...

I totally get this...mixing can work though...but, not on a regular basis. My closest friends I see one-on-one, which doesn't mix as well. Although I did it for my 50th birthday party and it worked!

RockStarTri said...

Mixing friends never works. It is sort of like cranberry sauce and milk.

Jill said...

My "running" girlfriends took me to dinner before I went to my first Boston and stupidly, I invited some non-runner friends. ACKWARD!!!! The non-runner couldn't understand the hoopla of off the running. HUH?? Hope all works well, good luck!

Petraruns said...

the older I get the better mixing friends seems to work - or the less anxious I get about it. They either do or don't get on. They're big girls and can deal.. I think if you let go of the expectation they all "have" to be friends with each other it's okay.

Having said that I just read Jill's comments and I think running conversations should be had with running friends - or you could do what I did and make your best friend start running marathons?

Jennifer said...

Ha ha, funny post. I don't mind mixing my friend groups but I like it to be my choice. No be forced into it. Mmm, best way to make me hide inside all weekend it to tell me I HAVE TO GO to some weekend BBQ with my work "friends". Weekend friends and weekday friends are totally different.

ShutUpandRun said...

Quite the clever little comparison!! Never thought of KFC divided plates and friendships this way. I am the same - I try to mix up my friends at parties, but it always makes me a bit nervous.

Quinton J said...

D

Erika said...

this is great. I love the divider plates and won't eat my food if it touches...I'm also not a huge fan of mixing my friends together because they can be so different...good luck with the meet up!

Harold said...

Nice teeth! hehe

Big Daddy Diesel said...

Hmmm, I never knew there were friends out side of training friends, I need a life