The Daily Post sponsors the #weekendcoffeeshare. Twitter is also using this hashtag. If this is something you’d like to do, whether it be weekly like it’s supposed to be or the way I do it, once a month, I hope you will join in.
Last month I wrote this post as a dialogue between you, the reader and me. This month I am writing it as straight prose. Dialogue will be back next month.
If we were to share some time having coffee, I would want to go some place where they also have tea, green tea if at all possible. [It sits better on my stomach.]
The negative vibes floating endlessly around Facebook have me examining what friendship means. This is not a small matter either because what today’s society calls friendship and what I believe it to be is not really coincide. We could discuss what the term means accord to that social media site but, to be truthful, I cannot get past calling the whole network a sham.
Let us consider the term as it applies to life away from the internet.
As a child, most of the children I knew at school I did not refer to as friends. I thought of them as classmates. I knew nothing about their home lives, their families, what they preferred for breakfast, or even what time they were expected to be in bed at night. Sure, there were a couple of them I played with after school and on the weekends, and I did consider them friends. Some of my classmates would arbitrarily call another classmate a friend even though they did not know much about the person.
I could never understand why they would do that. I am still stumped by this. Chances are those classmates rarely or never talked about that person as a friend except to say they knew who the other one was.
Back in time, the nineteenth century, people, in general, were more particular about who they called a friend. The term, acquaintance was used quite often, making the distinction between someone you were just cordial with and someone who you actually confided in on matters that were important to you.
Of course, I have heard it said that people of today divulge all sorts of personal information to people who are little more than strangers. Although I want to be considered an open person to those I meet, this does not mean I want unfamiliar people knowing what only my closest friends are aware of.
Friendship, to me, means I am willing to put myself on the line for that person. I am not apprehensive about telling him or her the truth even though it may be painful. I am jubilant for that person who something terrific happens to him or her. Though I may experience some envy at times over what this person has or is doing, it never goes beyond into jealousy. I am able to accept his or her honest assessments of me and what I do as well.
Have we become too familiar with people we know absolutely nothing about?
The neighbors I associate with, live on either side of my own residence. When we are out in our yards, we chat for a minute or two. We may wish each other good day as we hop into our respective vehicles to go to work or finish errands. Yet, I cannot say they are friends. We are not involved in each other lives at all.
Be that as it may, I do have a few friends I have never met. Yes, you have probably guessed. I know them from my travels through cyberspace. We have alike interests that keep us communicating through emails, blog comments, and social media sites. But should I be calling this friendship when we have not even shaken hands? Would a better term to describe our relationship one of comradeship?
They sure feel like friends to me. Am I being persnickety of this term, friendship? Maybe to a small degree.
I guess what I am trying express is I believe many people in today’s society do not really understand the meaning of friendship. Despite how much they tell to whoever will listen, they are actually islands within themselves. All of them are utterly isolated if you ask me.
“Ponder for a long time whether you shall admit a given person to your friendship; but when you have decided to admit him, welcome him with all your heart and soul.” ~ Seneca