Archive for November, 2007


November 8, 2007


Friends. What are they? Why do we insist on having them? When should we use them? And where are they right now?

These are questions I sometimes ask myself every day. I just got off the phone with a man who is complaining of having no time for himself because he spends so much time with his friends. This man is a social addict. Addicted to society. He simply has too many friends (more than 15). I personally have limited myself to 6 friends. One for each day of the week, with a spare day for myself which I spend alone on the sofa with a modest bottle of Merlot, a good book (non-fiction) and a mirror. It’s a system that works for me, and I’m not about to change it for anyone.


Having ‘Friends’ is very much in vogue at the time of writing in this, with web sites like ‘Friends Reunited’ and ‘Friendbook’ completely devoted to this trendy pastime. I see even Channel Four have jumped on the bandwagon with a new documentary series about six American, gender-balanced friends who live in one room together. Judging by the short snippet I caught the other evening (ironically, while visiting one of my friends – I don’t own or want a television set – please don’t send any), these friends spend most of their day making their other friends laugh. And the laughter from the other friends in the room is often deafening. Now, I’m all for the hormone-inducing power of laughter, within moderation. But these American friends just took things too far in my opinion.

There’s no doubt that friends are a crucial part of human existence. Without friends, we risk the danger of becoming self-centred, egotistical and/or insane. Characteristics which coincidentally are all shared by my ex-wife.