Um…You Are Not My Friend. Sorry Buddy.

By Slim Jackson

I was reading a lot of the comments from the last couple blog posts, and then it got me thinking. I don’t have very many good friends, but I have a helluva lot of acquaintances. Of all the people I’ve met over the last 10 years, there’s seriously like 11 people that I would consider good friends. 5-6 of em are pretty much considered family minus the blood ties. I’ve learned over time that a lot of relationships and bonds form out of convenience. It could be cuz you went to the same high school, played on the same sports team, went to the same college, lived in the same dorm, were in the same major, OR wanted to join the same fraternity or sorority. Some of these relationships people have more of a choice over than others. Not to say that people want to be enemies, but realistically a lot of our relationships outside of family members are formed due to convenience and how someone can benefit us as an individual. I’ve re-categorized a lot of people from good friends, to friends, to acquaintances, to I would cross the street if I saw you getting jumped. I really just call em how I see em.

So Slim. Looks like your about to ruffle feathers with your nose in the air attitude…

No no no. I’m not saying that I treat all the people differently based on categories. I value friendships regardless of the level. If you’re an acquaintance, I’m still all about kickin it. You’re still my boy or my homegirl. However, there is something about our interaction that smells more fishy than…

Okay, so maybe not fishy, but I’d venture to say we have completely different interests and when we touch base usually it’s because one of us wants something. Let’s just be real on this Nonetheless, we are still cool and I’d help you if you really needed me. Friends and good friends play some type of role in my life daily or weekly. It could be subtle, or it could be you sitting on the phone letting me tell you how I wanted to punch someone in the face for acting silly. What you do for me, I will do for you…plus a little more.

You haven’t mentioned Best Friends Slim? Do you not have one? Is not anyone good enough to be your Best Friend?

I wouldn’t wanna ruin my relationships with good friends, friends, and acquaintances by going into what constitutes a best friend. That, my readers, is where you come in. I wanna know what makes a good friend or best friend in your mind? Do you categorize people? How do you distinguish between the real and the phony? Let the floor be open for discussion…

Your Friend,


17 responses to “Um…You Are Not My Friend. Sorry Buddy.

  1. Hmmm…I have two best friends. One from high school and one from college who each bring unique and sometimes varied views of everything. They are similar in that they wants whats best but on occasion the one that I’ve known since I was 10 finds it much easier to read me and can hurt my feelings more.

    Now at this point I would say I carry for acquaintances that real friends. Does anyone else feel that the older you get, the smaller and more quality your friend circle is?

  2. how do I distinguish.,. the friends that have been there with me through rough times, who are truthful, honest and above all else allow me to be me without having to make any apologies.
    I have 3 really close friends not including blood relatives and my husband. 1 girl and 2 guys..and yes my circle has gotten much. much smaller. I have had to let people go that didnt grow with me, or who were to full of drama or just leading a different life than I was. I am married with a child, a lot of my single girl friends fell to the wayside out of just not running in the same circles anymore. You guys going to the club and I am going to kindermusic on saturdays…..

  3. Sowhatiff Jenkins

    You know how growing up as a tween, you would often fall in and out of favor with your “friends” and they with you, and it would be like the end of the world? Well, when this happened to my sisters, my mom would always say to them “You don’t have friends, you have classmates.”

    You have to put the word, and people you apply it to into a context. The meaning of the word “friend” changes just as often and quickly as people themselves do. I have fallen out of touch with people I once called “best friends” because of changes that happened in our lives. I think titles are less important, as compared to the substance of the relationship itself. There are people you see or talk to every day that aren’t significant, or those that you see or speak to once in a blue, that you will give you right arm for. And sometimes the word “friend” is not sufficient enough to really encompass the relationship you have with someone…or its too much to describe it.

    ::happy I was one of the first to comment:: 🙂

  4. I think my Pops is my bestfriend and I think that is because of his age. Both of my parents are young. Then I have ppl I consider brothers and those are ppl I would entrust my kids to God forbid I die and I have four of those. Then there are my ninjas: 10 of those. Then there are some other folk I chill with.

  5. Hey Slim,

    With ultimate friendship comes sacrifice. The willingness to ride for ya mans, take a charge and not snitch, support, play wingman, etc.

    It is a concept I call “Hundred Percenters”. Those are people I can always count on. Obviously my brothers (from the same mother) fall into this category, but I am blessed to have several brothers (from other mothers) who also fall into this category. I think most people may have 2 or 3 folks, but I can honestly say I probably have 12 or so peoples I can call 100%ers.

    To me, the essence is that it isn’t just about who’s in your corner, but about whose corner you’re in… which makes me say that even if you’re not my best friend or roll dog or if I don’t see you/speak to you as often as I’d/you’d like… doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be there when you need me. I’m never a F.A.A.F. (failure as a friend). Scream @ ya boy boy. I gotchu.

    – Gs.&.B

  6. lol @ FAAF. I thought to be a FAAF one had to consistently booboo on his boys when it came to chicks and then put up a status message about them on facebook everyday for 4 months because he won the opportunity to be a professional male groupie to an aging star…

    Sorry, couldn’t help myself but to “fabricate” that scenario.

  7. I have a lot of friends. I think friends are the people you kick it with, hang with and shoot the shit with. Personally, I hate the term associate or acquaintance – it lowers someone’s importance/relevance in your life and anyone I choose to “associate with” more than once deserves a more fitting title. So I call them friends. These are the people I may have only been “friends” with that one semester we had a class together and they are on my Facebook LOL but we don’t talk all day everyday and I probably wouldn’t think to call them if I were in a bind. But they are people that I hit up every time I am in their city and we can kick it or vice versa. They are people who will be there for me in little ways, ie buying a drink here or taking me to the airport there.

    The next level (for me) are my sisters and brothers. Not my actual family, but the people who are so important in my life they take precedence over some of my blood relatives. These are the people I KNOW I can call at any time for anything. These are the people who I would give my life or liberty for and would expect the same in return. These are the people who truly know me, flaws and all, but still love me.

    For me the only way for someone to make it to BFF status is by showing they deserve to be on that level. It has been proven through times of change and growth and arguments and everything else that life entails My BFF’s are the people who I can get into a screaming match with, cuss out, hang up on and call the next day like usual and there is no beef or games or passive aggressiveness. They are the people who will call me on my ish and aren’t afraid of my wrath because they know no matter what we say or do to each other we are still BFF’s and NOTHING can change that.

  8. hahahaha, slim.

    These days FAAFness is running more rampant than bitchassness it seems.

    i’m bout to make some t-shirts like diddy did.

    – Gs.&.B

  9. “Personally, I hate the term associate or acquaintance – it lowers someone’s importance/relevance in your life and anyone I choose to “associate with” more than once deserves a more fitting title.”

    That’s cool, but I (personally) take the title, “friend,” very seriously. I am a very guarded person–especially with my emotions. If you can break down that wall, or if I let you come in through the back door (pause?), you are one I’d consider a friend…or maybe more. I have very few friends–a hand full–and several folk I consider cool peoples.

    I am a very sociable person–most would call me an extrovert (Expressive Driver for those business folk out there)–so I can appear to have a good time with anyone. (Schmoozing anyone?) So the amount of time I spend “kickin’ it” with someone is not a fair reflection of his/her significance in my life, and s/he will be called an acquaintance/associate/homie accordingly. I think the proper distinction is always necessary. Like Tiff said, “…sometimes the word “friend” is not sufficient enough to really encompass the relationship you have with someone…or it’s too much to describe it.” Word.

  10. “If you can break down that wall, or if I let you come in through the back door (pause?)”

    Yeah. Pause. No question about that one. That’s got innuendo written all over

  11. Nyela,

    I can see your point but I guess I just keep it so real that I don’t have the issue of keeping people in my circle who I cannot or would not consider a friend. To me that’s just fronting. Either you eff w/ someone and they are ya people, or you don’t in my world. And as I mentioned I do of course have my inner circle, but that doesn’t make the outer circle just some acquaintance off the street. For me an acquaintance (if I had to use the word) is the person who I see daily and speak to but don’t know their name etc. But I realize not everyone can keep it as real as I do 😉

  12. not sure if this point has been made.. no offense you guys are writing dissertations on this joint….but when you are younger you use the term friend very loosely.. as you get older you attach more meaning to it and it has a very serious connotation. Most people dont completely open themselves up to any and everybody and the older you get the less likely you are to let someone new in……

  13. Insomnia,

    I must continue on with shay-d-lady’s point: I don’t and will never use the term “friend” loosely. As I matured, so did my understanding of friendship and what it truly entails. If the mere act of hanging out with someone occasionally–or perhaps more than occasionally–were to constitute what it means to be a friend, well, that wouldn’t make for a very substantive friendship.

    A friend, to me, is someone I love and can count on no matter what. I entrust them with a part of myself. That is not a commitment I am willing to make with someone I chill with on occasion, and I would never expect that of them–no matter how “real” they keep it. My mission in life is not to “keep it real,” it’s to be real. Being real, to me, is being able to distinguish fact from fallacy (you might call this recognizing a “front”).

    Fallacy: All who frequent our social circles are our friends because we allow them to and we know their names.

    Fact: We all have people in our lives who are cool to hang out with but ain’t reliable worth a damn. Homie, maybe? Friend? No, thanks.

    So, Insomnia, while I see your point, I’m all about verbiage. I’m okay with limiting my use of the term “friend” and holding it to the highest standard so that my friends know that they mean that much more to me–albeit my “realness” may be compromised. Actually, I believe setting the standard is as real as it gets. 🙂

    Keepin it real since real could be kept,

  14. Sowhatiff Jenkins

    Even when you give people that oh so special “friend” label, there is always that possibility that they will find some way to violate what made the relationship worth having in the first place. So let’s just do away with the silly little word all together…until you have to be like “Hi, this is my friend, SuchandSuch.”

    Just an observation…the fellas don’t have much to say about this subject…I’m thinking women seem to have the most issue, so to speak, in this area. Or maybe the guys are just busy today…

  15. Word, Tiff. Our oh-so-precious friends have the most power to hurt us. But since we’ve put them on that level in the first place, why not give them a title eh? We gotta call them something. Lol.

    At any rate, I cringe everytime I have to introduce a not-quite-friend to someone else as a friend. I figure it’d be an a/hole move of me to introduce them as just someone with whom I frequently socialize but to whom I haven’t committed my friendship…right? Oh the dilemma…

  16. I feel ya Sowhatiff. Maybe I should have typed the word “greek” and something controversial in the subject I’m really curious what all the other readers think about this topic.

  17. I mean, I got my friends and then I got my nigs (sorry, thats what they are to me). I’m not calling just anybody my nig, the level of comfortableness must be high. Ride or die, seeing-me-throwing-punches- shrugging-and-jumping-into-the-fight type relationship. Like Sowatiff said, everyone else if I have to introduce you, I am probably begin with “this is my friend…..”

    If you are truly an acquaintance, I might not introduce you. Don’t have to many of those and chances are I don’t know much about you, mostly like forgot your name….Sorry!

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