Gross title, right? But there's a point, I promise. And yes, I'm posting this early, because tomorrow's going to be NUTTY NUTTY NUTTY, and I won't have the chance. Plus, I couldn't think of anything for Thursday, I'm tired from a late night combination of the kid's orchestra concert (videos to be on Webshots soon) and making baskets. I'm obsessed.
Today's Family Almost-Friday is about those family members you choose all by yourself. They're not related to you by blood, but they might as well be, because you can fight with them and get drunk in front of them and they can show up at your house when you're sporting scary hair and PJs and you won't be embarrassed, and in fact you'll be even *better* friends with them later.
If you have even *one* of these, you're very very lucky... I'm lucky enough to have several, and I'd be lost without them. They've helped me raise my daughter, listened to my advice and sometimes even taken it even though they think I'm a pushy knowitall (which I am), stuck with me through thick and thin, and even gone away for several years, only to come back like no time passed (the true mark of a lifelong friend, I think). I can't even name them all for you, and how f'in lucky am I to have that?
And lest you think this an estrogen fest, this includes two very awesome boy friends (not boyfriends, just friends who are boys), who I will name here because they deserve to be recognized as Model Males who have been absolutely vital to the child in keeping her from later deciding that assholes are totally the way to go in boyfriend/husband choices. She has proof in them that there are fantastic men out there who are everything we hope they will be. (Kevin & Kelly, that'd be you.)
Kevin has been my best friend who's a boy for many years, and the child adores him. He gets a special award for Model Maleness for rescuing the kid from her stupid father's house last Spring for a day. It was, she said, the best day of her entire vacation. Plus he always sends her awesome birthday cards and is diligent about following up with a call on her birthday. He plays games with her patiently, but without letting her cheat, and he lets her pick the restaurant. The man sat through the Spaghetti Factory. If that isn't awesome, then I need to check the definition.
Kelly has been a husband-of-a-friend friend since his wife Nova & I renewed our friendship some years back, but has since become a my-friend-because-he-is friend. Still with me? Great! Like you didn't already know I'm insane. Anyway, he gets a special award for Model Maleness because he has made it a point to let the child know that she can always count on him, and has backed that up in action as well as word.
But this leads me to a question that if I was smart I would save for Wonder Why Wednesday, but it seems to flow today. Why is it that people seek out people of their own choosing and often tend to be closer to them than their own families? Again, I am very lucky to have a family full of people I like to be around, but lots of people don't have that luxury, and they seek the ability to be themselves elsewhere.
I see this need to be with people who like what we like everywhere I look, this need to alleviate the lonliness of feeling like we're the only one doing X Y or Z. I truly believe this is the basis for such fervent dedication to "subcultures" (I use that term very loosely - these cultures are bigger than you think) like crafters and gamers and Ren Faire folk. It's about being sure of yourself in a situation, something we all need to be able to keep our heads up. You can't wear your bodice and singlet to Christmas with Grandma without getting an ear-full or at the very least "the look" from your mom, but you don't even have to ask if it's appropriate at the King Richards Faire Yule Ball. You know you're safe. Birds of a feather, and all that.
Does this mean there's nothing new under the sun? Probably. But is that such a bad thing? Familiarity might breed contempt in some circles, but not at a convention... There, familiarity will get you prizes, free drinks, and probably a make-out session with a the Klingon or Darth Vader of your choosing.
So yeah, go find some friends. I guarantee, whatever it is you're into, there's at least 10 other people who will accept it wholly. If you're extra-lucky, you might even find someone who *doesn't* enjoy your passions but supports them anyway... and boy am I lucky.
And the title? Well, cherry Koolaid is just better in water, that's all. Not that I've compared.
Have a wonderful weekend... you know what I'll be doing!