Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.
Yesterday morning, as I often do on Thursday’s, I met a former colleague at 6 AM for coffee. I learned that he is in the process of adjusting to the loss of a long term relationship that has been very important to him. You see both my friend and the person he lost are retired and filled much of their days sharing experiences and companionship. Now that it is over there is a big gap in his life.
He did share with me that for many years he and three of his friends from his college years have gotten together for a few days annually to share their thoughts and dreams. These hours together provide the benefits that come only from sharing with caring friends, but they only come for him once a year for they all live in other cities.
My friend realizes that there is little value in agonizing over his recent loss, what it is time for is to build new friendships. He like many of us can’t hide away waiting for something good to happen as the friends waiting to find us will never do so if we are hidden away. My friend has a lot to offer the friends he will make, I just hope he does not have to wait too long to enjoy what his future friends have to offer him.
Here is an abridged friendship story that I like, I think you will too.
What Is A Friend?
In ninth grade your idea of a good friend was the person who would go to a party thrown by a senior so you wouldn’t wind up being the only freshman there. In tenth grade your idea of a good friend was the person who changed their schedule so you would have someone to sit with at lunch. In eleventh grade your idea of a good friend was the person who gave you rides in their new car, convinced your parents that you shouldn’t be grounded, consoled you when you broke up with Nick [or Drew] or Susan, and found you a date to the prom. In twelfth grade your idea of a good friend was the person who helped you pick out a college/university, assured you that you would get into that college/university, helped you deal with your parents who were having a hard time adjusting to the idea of letting you go.
At graduation your idea of a good friend was the person who was crying on the inside but managed the biggest smile one could give as they congratulated you. The summer after twelfth grade your idea of a good friend was the person who helped you sneak out of the house when you just couldn’t deal with your parents, assured you that now that you and Nick or you and Susan were back together, you could make it through anything, helped you pack up for university and just silently hugged you as you looked through blurry eyes at 18 years of memories you were leaving behind, and finally on those last days of childhood, went out of their way to give you reassurance that you would make it in college as well as you had these past 18 years, and most importantly sent you off to college knowing you were loved.
Now, your idea of a good friend is still the person who gives you the better of the two choices, holds your hand when you’re scared, helps you fight off those who try to take advantage of you, thinks of you at times when you are not there, reminds you of what you have forgotten, helps you put the past behind you but understands when you need to hold on to it a little longer, stays with you so that you have confidence, goes out of their way to make time for you, helps you clear up your mistakes, helps you deal with pressure from others, smiles for you when they are sad, helps you become a better person, and most importantly loves you!
There’s never a wrong time to pick up a phone or send a message telling your friends how much you miss them or how much you love them. You know who you are, pass it on to someone who you want to remind. And thank you for being a friend.
A friend knows the song in my heart and sings it to me when my memory fails.
The results of a computerized survey indicate the perfect Rabbi preaches exactly fifteen minutes. He condemns sins but never upsets anyone. He works from 8:00 AM until midnight and is also a janitor. He makes $50 a week, wears good clothes, buys good books, drives a good car, and gives about $50 weekly to the poor. He is 28 years old and has preached 30 years. He has a burning desire to work with teenagers and spends all of his time with senior citizens. The perfect Rabbi smiles all the time with a straight face because he has a sense of humor that keeps him seriously dedicated to his work. He makes 15 calls daily on congregation families, shut-ins and the hospitalized, and is always in his office when needed. If your Rabbi does not measure up, simply send this letter to six other synagogues that are tired of their Rabbi, too. Then bundle up your Rabbi and send him to the synagogue on the top of the list. In one week, you will receive 1,643 Rabbis and one of them will be perfect. Have faith in this procedure. One congregation broke the chain and got its old Rabbi back in less than three weeks.
I hung a camouflaged vest in the closet last winter but now I can’t find it.
A Kentucky Phone Company was going to hire a team of telephone pole installers, and the boss had to choose between a team of two rednecks and a team of two Irish guys? So the boss met with both teams and said: “Here’s what we’ll do. Each team will install poles out on the new road for a day. The team that installs the most phone poles gets the job”.
Both teams headed right out. At end of the shift, Pat and Mike, the Irish guys, came back and the boss asked them how many they had installed. They said that it was tough going, but they’d put in twelve.
Forty-five minutes later, Bubba and Duke, the redneck guys came back and they were totally exhausted. The boss asked, “Well, how many poles did you guys install?
“Bubba, the team leader wiped his brow and sighed, “Duke and me, we got three in.” The boss gasped, “Three? Those two Irish guys put in twelve!” “Yeah,” said Bubba, “but you should see how much they left stickin’ out of the ground!”
“Never go to your high school reunion pregnant or they will think that is all you have done since you graduated.”
There is a folk belief that if you bury a statue of St. Joseph on a piece of property, it will be sold more quickly. I took the St. Joseph from my Nativity scene and buried it near my front door. A few days later a woman made me an offer on the house. Since she had to sell her home too, I suggested she enlist the help of the saint as well. After a month of burying the statue all over her lawn, she had no nibbles and, in disgust, put the statue out with the trash.
A week later she opened her local paper and read: “Town Sells Landfill to Private Developer.”
Some wives have such good memories that they can even remember things that never happened.
The cruise ship docked at a Mexican port during a very high tide. Everyone on board was forced to use the ship’s narrow gangplank as a passageway to the dock far below. The staff stood motionless when a passenger in her 70s appeared at the top of the plank. There wasn’t room for anyone to assist her, so she edged along slowly and finally made it to the dock safely, to everyone’s relief. As she stepped down, she turned, looked back to the top of the gangplank and shouted, “It’s okay, Mother, you can come down now.”
In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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