The Friendship Club

by Marinka on April 28, 2013

When you get to be my age, it’s hard to make new friends.

I used to blame myself.

Maybe it was my personality. Either that or my general dislike of other people. I know it’s hard to believe, but some are really turned off by that. I don’t get it either. Assholes.

But I now have proof that my difficulty in friendship formation is totally not my fault.

I will explain everything and you will agree with me.

A few months ago, I met a new woman in my mah jongg group.

“Hello,” I said. “It is very nice to meet you!”

She returned my friendly and appropriate greeting and we had some small talk. Some mah jongg banter- how she hoped one day to have my prowess as a player and how she felt lucky to be sitting at the same table as me. Words to that effect, I don’t have the exact transcript.

I’d see her occasionally and it was always nice and pleasant and I started to think of her as a Friend of the Future, someone I could maybe have a cup of coffee with or borrow money from.

This is how friendship formation works, right? You get together around a common interest, exchange pleasantries and then change your relationship status to Friends on Facebook.

Well, apparently this Friend of the Future did not study the Friendship Rulebook.
Because Chapter One of the Friendship Rulebook is Tell Your Friend of the Future Important Information.

I knew that her husband was a writer, but it wasn’t until she mentioned that he’d written a memoir that my ears perked up. As you may remember, I’ve been writing a memoir for the past couple of years, and I figured if he’d already written one, maybe I can just change a few things around in his manuscript and save myself a lot of time and headaches. I’d recently started playing Candy Crush on my iPhone and it’s crazy what a commitment that is.

I went home and looked up his book.

longestwayhome

And then I knew instantly why this Friendship of the Future was doomed.

Because friends don’t marry their potential future friend’s high school pretend husbands.

I explained all this to my husband.

“What are you talking about?” he asked. He may have also asked why I was talking while he was trying to sleep, but I’m trying to stay on point.

“She’s married to Blane McDonnagh,” I lamented.

“I don’t know who that is,” he yawned.

If there’s one thing that gets on my nerves, it’s people who take their time waking up in the middle of the night.

“That’s a character from Pretty in Pink,” I explained. Why does everything have to be spelled out? I’m like Annie Sullivan.

“Is that one of those ridiculous Real Housewives shows?” Poor thing. He was trying.

“It’s a John Hughes movie from the 80s.” I was close to giving up.

“And your friend married a character from the movie?”

“Have you not heard one word I screeched?” I asked him. “First of all, she’s a pre-friend, and no, she didn’t marry a movie character, she married the actor who portrayed him, in case you forgot how movies work, and by the way, I wanted to marry him when I was in high school.”

“I certainly hope you can forgive her this transgression,” he said.

And I tried.

I thought about it for hours and finally decided to air it out.

“I got the book,” I emailed her in what I hoped was a terse tone, “and you are now on friendship probation.”

She responded with some confusion about why she was on friendship probation. And then when I went out of my way I explained it to her, she still refused to take responsibility for ruining my life.

I honestly don’t understand how I’m supposed to make new friends under these hostile circumstances.

Or how I can remain married to someone who’d never heard of Pretty in Pink.

One year ago ...

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Female Friendship Resources | HerStories Project
April 30, 2013 at 11:07 am

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Alexandra April 28, 2013 at 9:42 am

THis is unheard of, untolerable, and I totally get it.

SOUNDEST reason ever for FP.

As if…

xo

Reply

Holly April 28, 2013 at 9:50 am

This is why I hate not living in the city. I don’t have these strange encounters that spice up life.

However, I totally understand the jealousy here. How dare she.

Reply

Cheryl petrovics
Twitter:
April 28, 2013 at 9:59 am

How rude can one person be? He was obviously your “major appliance” first! And, btw, if you happen to run into Jon Bender’s wife, tell her to watch her back.

Reply

Suebob
Twitter:
April 28, 2013 at 9:59 am

This is why we can never be friends. I’m on Team Duckie, BITCH.

Reply

Mom101
Twitter:
April 28, 2013 at 7:46 pm

Team Blane. 4Ever.

Reply

wfbgal April 28, 2013 at 10:03 am

My husband didn’t get it either.

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Mamaintheburbs April 28, 2013 at 10:14 am

This is perfect! Huge fan of all John Hughes movies, especially Pretty in Pink! Very impressed you remembered Blane’s last name. I was once in Vegas with my parents and my dad was playing black jack w him. My mom sent me down to get my father to come to bed. I was in 8th grade and star struck! Except he was a complete douche to me and told me “little girls should be seen and not heard.” I still love him!

Reply

Glamamom
Twitter:
April 28, 2013 at 10:28 am

The Irish wife? Great story. I read most of the memoir. It’s very good. And not to add insult to injury but I met Blane during his press tour and he is just lovely. You may want to work harder at that friendship.

Reply

Gdot April 28, 2013 at 10:34 am

Wow. She’s lucky you didn’t cut her.
Damn

Reply

annie April 28, 2013 at 11:49 am

I bet if you’d have told Husbandrinka you had a thing for Long Duk Dong he’d have woken right up and paid attention to you. Oh wait, that was Sixteen Candles wasn’t it? Sorry, I saw him in Parental Guidance last night and well, I can’t get that name out of my head!

Reply

Cy
Twitter:
April 28, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Except at the end of the movie, right? Which they must have changed and filmed later? Because his hair is all goofy and wig-like. Oh, and his Law & Order SVU? Probably the only episode of that show I’ve seen. He is so heinously scary in that, it still gives me chills. Other than that…he’s great! So, yeah. Mandatory total friendship probation.

Reply

christy April 28, 2013 at 3:38 pm

He’s an amazing travel writer too. Love him. AND she totally deserves the friendship probation! Geez!

Reply

Maggie May April 28, 2013 at 4:37 pm

This is one of the funniest posts I’ve read in a long time.
This :

“Maybe it was my personality. Either that or my general dislike of other people. I know it’s hard to believe, but some are really turned off by that”

I get.

Reply

Mom101
Twitter:
April 28, 2013 at 7:44 pm
Crayon April 28, 2013 at 8:21 pm

This was hilarious, great post! I completely get you, if I lived in NYC we would get along well. “Friendship probation” LOL! The whole bit about your husband not knowing about Pretty in Pink, unforgivable.

Reply

the mama bird diaries
Twitter:
April 28, 2013 at 9:52 pm

I remember running into Andrew McCarthy in the village and I almost died. That voice. That same voice.

That said, I’m not sure how I’d feel about my fiance having to wait 4 years and travel the world just to get up the courage to marry me. But if it was Andrew McCarthy, I’d probably deal with it.

Reply

Bitchin' Amy
Twitter:
April 29, 2013 at 12:17 am

You think you’ve got problems–My husband asked me what “hashtag” means today after he saw it in an article. It’s like he doesn’t even live on the same planet as me!

Reply

Megan April 29, 2013 at 10:45 am

And this is why I could never have been friends with Nicole Kidman… although I think she’s off friendship probation by now. Especially with the whole Scientology thing.

Reply

robinski April 29, 2013 at 11:32 am

I think she should just let you win a hand at mahjongg and the whole thing will be forgotten…

Actually, I think it’s your issue: You should offer to babysit any pretend children from your pretend husband & you will get over it.

Frankly, you need to move on to a new love: someone like Ryan Gosling or Paul Ryan or some combo of the two……

Reply

suburbancorrespondent
Twitter:
April 29, 2013 at 11:43 am

Just goes to show, you can never be too careful with this “friends” business…

Reply

joeinvegas April 29, 2013 at 12:05 pm

You could always swap husbands with her

Reply

tracy@sellabitmum April 29, 2013 at 7:52 pm

Husband swapping sounds like a good idea right now. You should take her of FP with that condition.

Reply

Neil
Twitter:
April 30, 2013 at 12:21 pm

My mother plays mah jongg sometimes with Leonard Nimoy’s cousin.

Reply

Marta
Twitter:
April 30, 2013 at 5:56 pm

My husband never can wake up in the middle of the night to properly listen to my conversations either. It’s really annoying.

Also, I second the husband swapping.

Reply

anymommy April 30, 2013 at 8:03 pm

All the cool people do not live where I live. I don’t even get to pre-friend people who end up on friendship probation for being married to 80s movie stars.

Reply

Jen Anderson
Twitter:
May 1, 2013 at 4:22 pm

Omigod, let’s hate her together. Back when I worked at Sony, he came in for a meeting and everyone was so excited to spot him in the halls. Also, wasn’t he on Lipstick Jungle or that other show that was similar and on around the same time? He was dreamy in that too.

Reply

Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes May 3, 2013 at 7:31 am

You let her sit at your Mah Jong table and then she does this to you? How dare she. That woman is trouble, mark my words.

Reply

Jon May 4, 2013 at 1:06 pm

Mrs Mccarthy sounds pretty humble. You are very right about Candy Crush being a huge time investment. I can’t even keep my phone charged anymore because of that stupid game.

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