Am I a Serial Friendinator?

I have been thinking lately, that I may have a problem. I may be a Serial Friendinator.

When I was a lil’ girl, I was under the impression that it was the goal of every person in my class to acquire a Best Friend.

Me!
Friends are fun!

This was tricky for me, because I liked a bunch of people, and would rotate in their circles depending on their/my preferences at the time. I had one girl who I was close with, but she was also close with — and Best Friends with — another girl and boy….. so I felt that didn’t really count. Another girl and I were close for a while, but that ended quickly when I left for another school for Grade 5 French Immersion. I never heard from her again until this year when I found her on Facebook (yay childhood memories!) and we added each other and still haven’t spoken.

So, in Grade 5, I tried to find a new Best Friend. In a class of all girls (but one boy, who I don’t blame at all for leaving a year later), flaring hormonal tempers and allegiances that revolved like cheap neon vacancy signs at a scuzzy motel, this goal suddenly became as unlikely as if I were trying to find a single-coloured rainbow made of unicorn-shaped water droplets (read: 60% unlikely, except on rainy days when it’s more like 50% unlikely).

It's still possible.

My sister reassured me that in high school, things would be different. In high school, you could pick who you wanted to hang out with, and could avoid the people who sucked…… or the other way around, but that would be kind of dumb so I didn’t do that. High school was alright for the most part — the place still abounded with dummies, but I could actually find people to talk to and it was nice. I made a lot of good friends. And at different points in my time in high school, I might have said I had a Best Friend….. but alas, those particular title-wielding strong ties diminished, and the best I could hope for was that we would still keep in touch. And not in the class pen-pal project with a school in Argentina way — an occasional, actual update dedicated to each other way. I still have good friends from high school, and it’s nice.

However, when I went away to university, it was an opportunity to meet new peeps, and to continue looking for a Best Friend. Well, not 6 months into my studies, I started dating a guy I’d end up dating for 4.5 years. He was my Best Friend for that time. Then, I had to essentially start all over in my last year of university, since I really hadn’t maintained many friendships outside the relationship.

I went all out.

I answered an ad for a co-singer for a band (for one song they needed help with). I thrust myself into a new world of people, and surprisingly came out with a really amazing set of new friends. The person whose ad I responded to became my Best Friend for about a year. We jammed, and played coffee shops, and he taught me about the joys of cooking and music and salsa-dancing even if you have no coordination. He taught me how to appreciate soccer and running for more than 2 minutes at a time. I probably taught him a few things too, but who knows what they were. It was fun. Then I moved. I wanted to do a postgrad program, so that ended that intense Best Friendship.

In that postgrad program, I met a girl who is probably the closest I can come to naming a female Best Friend I’ve ever had. She and I thought so similarly, people said it was like we were sisters. Of course, she was crazy too. But in a good way. We’d look at each other and burst out laughing. We worked on a big project together, spending tons of time together, and at the end still wanted to hang out. After the program’s internship positions landed us in two different locations, that intense Best Friendship ended too. I still miss her and in a perfect world would have us working together at the same place. I think she could make nearly any job bearable.

A few months later, I met my current boyfriend. Right from the start, our first actual date was 10 hours long….. so it was a good indication we could be good for each other. He has become my Best Friend. I am an extreme kinda gal, so I don’t see that changing in the near future, but I can’t help but wonder….. other than considering my boyfriend my Best Friend which is true in all the good senses of the title, am I a Serial Friendinator?

Hable con ella/Talk To Her

This is the name of one of my favourite films.  For some reason, I originally typed “movie” but had to erase it.  It’s one of those rare pieces of art too delicate to warrant being in the same category as Scary Movie 3 and Gigli.  Well, maybe pretty much anything is too good to be compared with Scary Movie 3 and Gigli but let’s not get sidetracked.  I’m here to tell you about Talk To Her.

This film is a drama, set in Spain.  The two main characters are Benigno and Marco, and they meet in the hospital where Benigno works as a nurse.  Marco is there visiting a famous female bullfighter named Lydia, who he was in the process of interviewing for a magazine.  In just a few months they had become very close, and when she gets severely gored in a bullfight, Marco goes to visit her often.  He is intrigued as he walks by the room where Benigno is working, because although his patient is clearly in a coma, the nurse is speaking to her as he works.  Benigno sees him and invites him in, then tells him the story of how he came to know this woman he loves, who is now also his patient.  This part is too complex, and for me to tell it here would be, quite simply, useless.  Suffice it to say, the woman did not share his affections before she got in the accident that hospitalized her.  Needless to say, he says he has been looking after her most days of the week and many nights as well, for four years.  He is clearly in love with this woman with whom he has had virtually no real or significant interaction.

The film shows a lot of the routine tasks nurses must perform, and the language is candid and the bluntness can be a bit shocking.  Through it all, though, Benigno’s softness — his almost feminine warmth — brings back the humanity within the hospital setting.  There are also occasional clips of theatre that add humour and depth to the sometimes very moving storyline.  The friendship of the two men grows as they spend more and more time together by the women’s bedsides, and the characters become richer and richer as more pieces of the plot are filled in.

The more dramatic moments, again, I feel obliged to keep secret, for fear of dissuading people from watching the actual film.  Granted I’m not the best at foreshadowing in movies, but after watching it again today it was as I expected: even if you know the plot and all its intricacies, the acting pulls you in anyway.  The first time I watched it, I cried.  Actually, I think I bawled.  Crying is rare for me (I laughed throughout A Walk To Remember), but I think honestly it might have been the first film to ever make me unable to stop crying.  I have been meaning to see it a second time to see if it still had an effect after the novelty of surprise had worn out, and to see if I still love this film; it did, and I still do.

           

Have you seen this film?  Tell me what you think!