Contrary to the lie I’ve been trying to perpetuate for the last 25 years, I am not a perfect human. I’m a repeat sock wearer, I fear using an electric kettle, my eyebrows grow faster when I drink alcohol and I cannot confidently say I know how to play Checkers. Also, sometimes I have the urge to break out in The Lion King’s “In the Jungle” in public—an urge I rarely resist. In spite of all of this (and more), I’ve met some incredibly amazing humans in my life. I also have a very intense personality, so when I find a human I like, I’m like, “you and me forever baby.”
I don’t know the actual definition of friendship, but if I had to operationalize the term, I would do so by recounting experiences.
- Friendship is playing appetizer Tetris with fried food after work while pretending you’re an alien.
- Friendship is peeing your pants together in the middle of the town square in Istanbul.
- Friendship is rolling around a bus station floor in Spain on your backpack acting like turtles that have fallen and can’t get up.
- Friendship is picking up a hitchhiker on your way home and watching him rob a convenience store together.
- Friendship is meeting for a drink at 5 pm and stumbling home at 4 am.
- Friendship is dressing up like historical figures and showing up at a bar at 6 am to watch the World Cup.
- Friendship is telling you that your face is too broken out to go out so we’re just going to stay home and watch a movie.
- Friendship is showing up at class the morning after a night out in matching men’s [insert athletic team here] shirts and not having to ask questions.
- Friendship is finding your friend in the hallway in Las Vegas, surrounded by credit cards trying to get into her hotel room and then spending the night with her in the bathroom snuggling a Styrofoam blanket for no logical reason.
- Friendship is holding you back from a fight with a 65-year-old man at a casino over a basketball game.
- Friendship is running through the streets of San Francisco with a bottle of Jack Daniels at 4 am screaming your name.
- Friendship is taking you to Taco Bell after a night out without you even having to ask.
- Friendship is never saying no to an impromptu pub crawl.
I hold my friends to pretty high standards and I expect them to do the same for me. They are a hodge-podge of every type of human being imaginable. Every single one of them is ambitious, inspiring and completely insane in their own right. Every single one of them motivates me to be a better human every single day. I’ve spent the last 25 years collecting friends around the world and subsequently leaving a little piece of my heart everywhere I go. They constantly lift me up, they support me and, together, they make me whole. They are my family and they are the best people I know.