For all intents and purposes, I have never belonged to a group, a 'posse', a 'collective', a 'gang'. As far as I can remember, being the new boy at school sort of hindered that achievement in social climbing. But here I am, being referred to as one of 'The Boys' this week - namely Matt, Charlie, Murray and myself, the three dudes from Centre Stage who are always seen together apparently. Strange, as I never noticed it forming but obviously observers have picked up on it and decided to label us. I've always whinged repeatedly I'm too straight for the gay world and too gay for the straight world, hence me never finding an intimate group of people to call my own. I've always had many one-to-one friendships, occasionally they know each other through random coincidences like work or university, but most of are definitely individual friendships I have cultivated over the years. It has been an intense few months, and perhaps my observations of new friends maybe short-lived and superficial, I sincerely hope not, but these past few weeks have been a strange learning curve when it has come to people and what makes a connection happen when it comes to 'making friends'. I've likened it to driving lessons. You can either learn to drive gradually over a period of months or years or go on a two week crash course and get your licence by the end of it. Joining Centre Stage put me through a similar assault course when it came to making new acquaintances. You learn very quickly who you like and even who you despise and can't stand the sight of. Those you do get on with, you get on with incredibly well and some have become as close as my existing long-term friendships. It all sounds terribly gushy and overly analytical to be making this point, but I have made great friends in Charlie, Murray and Matt and I hope it grows to become something I value greatly. Like most things, time will tell and this will probably be the only time I put it under the microscope.
It is a odd pleasure to be totally aware that you are 'bonding' with someone and they in turn, are also noticing it take place. That two or even three in this instance, disparate souls, who through a twist of fate and coincidence find themselves inhabiting the same living space and simply click into place. Perhaps this is quite a deep observation of three guys making friends with each other but as we said to each other week in a completely shit-faced, emotional state we're 'so glad we've met each other'. As you can imagine more hugs proceeded this 3am slurred conversation. Yes, I am effectively writing about getting pissed with your mates and telling them how much you love them, but if I went into further detail to why it meant so much, I'd probably lose the friends I have just gained.
I could have said becoming mates with Murray, Matt and Charlie has given me a warm glow inside but that would have made me sound like a Care Bear and requires less prose.
If I am on my tod again a few months time, sans 'The Boys' please of course skirt round the subject and never mention this entry to me again. On the otherhand things could be changing for the better and I do have a good track record of keeping friends, so I shouldn't be embarrassed by celebrating it.