15 August 2010

when you're the best of friends

According to my library, today is National Best Friend Day.  The librarians created a special display of books about friendship because one of the best ways to celebrate community is by reading alone, right?

Snarkiness aside, I like this idea, this National Best Friend Day.  However, I think the librarians may be wrong.  I know; it's a thought-provoking idea, that these embodiments of Marian the Librarian could be wrong.

But the Internet tells me National Best Friend Day was June 8.  National Friend Day {note the lack of best-ness} was two Sundays ago, and as far as I can tell, August 15 isn't anything special.  In terms of friendship celebrations, that is.  I'm sure, if it's your birthday, this is a very special day.

I don't know how these special days are decided.  Does Congress vote on them?  Can't you just see two senators, with matching striped ties and American flag lapel pins, suggesting this National Best Friend Day together because they were just so giddy to have found someone they can really talk to, I mean talk about what they're feeling and thinking?

Well, that's probably not how National Best Friend Day, whenever it may be, came about.  It has the distinctively saccharine sweet smell of Hallmark, those people who think the Sweetest Day is a holiday worthy of a card.

{Although in their defense, Hallmark didn't start Sweetest Day, a holiday that has always confused me and not just because I don't have someone who is sweet on me.  Sweet on me:  that sounds like something my grandma would say, and I like it.  It has a thoroughly nostalgic ring to it, and I think we should use it more instead of devolving into, "Well, do you like him?  Or like like him?"}

So my librarians are wrong, at least in America.  Maybe it's National Best Friend Day in Canada.  Or maybe it's just National Best Friend Day in the librarians' hearts, each a country unto itself.

I'm going to go along with my library.  This is National Best Friend Day, and it makes me think two things:

  A major perk of being a kid is that it's completely acceptable to point at someone and say out loud, "You're my best friend."  Every kid knows you have to have a best friend, an undeniable truth about life that I don't think we should lose when we grow up.  Somehow, though, declaring someone your best friend when you're past college feels slightly...well, childish.  Sure, we all need friends, but do we need the label?

Yes, we do.  We all like to feel special, and knowing that you're important enough to be declared a best friend—that's the best kind of specialness and it should be shared.

Two.  Winnie-the-Pooh and Piglet are an excellent best friend model.  Take this quote, for example:

Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind.  "Pooh," he whispered.
"Yes, Piglet?"
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw.  "I just wanted to be sure of you."
Such honesty.  Such vulnerability.  Such being okay with asking for reassurance.  Such trust.

Such best friendship.

Yeah, I think this is clearly National Best Friend Day in my heart, too.

1 comment:

  1. The Pooh and Piglet quote. That was on a card I had planned to send you when you were in France, I found it later had already been written in, but decided not to send it since it was so out of context.

    I wish I had kept it now.



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