Last night, I had a dream about a “friend” I haven’t seen in about five years. My dream revolved around the fact that my old friend had published a book and she was showing it to me in (what some might consider) a really snotty way. Never mind that in real life she never had any interest in writing and that this scenario is entirely unlikely. It was a dream, so we’re just going to go with it, ok? Anyway, I opened the book and saw that the entire preface was entirely covered in typos. I immediately wanted to hand her the business cards of every editor I’ve ever met, but my family told me that the book was published now and that there wasn’t much point and it would only offend her. Basically, they told me to keep my mouth shut. This annoyed me so much that I woke myself up.
There was quite a bit of tossing and turning as I tried to get back to sleep. Not only was I annoyed about the typos, but thinking of this “friend” annoys me. I put “friend” in quotes, because I think, at this point, we can safely say that this particular woman and I are no longer friends.
Like any adult, I have a few friends that got lost along the way, but, in general, I haven’t gotten rid of many people. For one thing, making friends is hard, and I’m lazy – I’d really prefer not to go through that effort again. But also, the friends I do keep around are, what I suppose my grandmother would call, “true blue.” These girls know where the bodies are buried, where the bridal shower photos are hidden, and all the words to Summer Nights from Grease. Also, for reasons too complex to go into, we can do an amazing rendition of Love Shack from the B-52’s. You don’t just memorize Love Shack on a whim, so losing a member of the band is difficult.
Or at least it should have been. But the last conversation my ex-friend and I had was when she called to announce that she was pregnant and I said, “Great, I’ve been meaning to tell you that I’m getting married next month.” Clearly, we’d drifted apart. Our steadily widening continental divide was fairly predictable, not entirely her fault, and kind of my choice (I stopped calling her and she never noticed), so why does it still bug me when she turns up in a dream? Am I mad at her failure as a friend or mine? Or am I just annoyed by the typos?
Bethany Maines is the author of Bulletproof Mascara, Compact With the Devil and Supporting the Girls, as well as The Dragon Incident, the first short in her new series Tales from the City of Destiny. You can also view the Carrie Mae youtube video or catch up with her at www.bethanymaines.com.