Where did my friends go?

lil boatMy Dad who reads the Boston Globe daily sent me this article today.  It’s about middle-aged men and why they lose their friends.

Here’s some more reading on the subject if you are so inclined. Apparently, I am not alone.

What timing Dad. I have been contemplating this for a while now; “Why am I so bad at maintaining friendships?”  “Do I have friends?”  “What does friendship mean?”

It’s almost as if I made a conscious decision at each milestone of my life to destroy the past.  Perhaps I’m oversimplifying and exaggerating, but at the heart of this discussion I believe there is some truth.

Here’s my friendship life-cycle summarized.

  • Go to school, make friends.
  • Go to high school, make new friends at cost to some of my older friendships
  • Go to college, slowly and unintentionally cull high school friends.
  • Graduate college, live in parents’ house for a year. Lose contact with college friends, and simultaneously re-establish friendships with high school friends.
  • Move to Seattle, lose contact with majority of high school and college friends, make new friends in Seattle
  • Get married, maintain friendships with Seattle friends (and partners/spouses as they are all either married or in relationships)
  • Focus on career and soon kids, start to lose Seattle friends.
  • Make some new friends at work – (thinking of one job in particular where I made some new, great connections and am currently trying like hell to hang on to these friendships.)
  • Lose contact with Seattle friends, see them once or twice a year at a bbq or group gathering. Focus is on family and work.
  • Get divorced. All friendships are now mostly acquaintances, with some exceptions.
  • Date/Hang out with women.  End things with the promise of friendship.  This sometimes works.

What to do about it?

  • Make plans, don’t flake
  • Reach out and continue to reach out
  • Call instead of text
  • Make the effort
  • Share everything
  • Talk about it
  • Listen and be present

I will let you know how it goes.

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Year(s) in Review

Wow.  What a year. Or six.  It’s been a while since I graced these pages with my erudite wit on all things about me.  Here’s a quick review for all my reader(s) ( “What up Einar!”).

In 2015, I stopped working and stopped being married. At the time, I was in a career that I often referred to as the “best job I ever had” and was betrothed for 10+ years.

With the dissolution of both career and marriage, I was all “I’m great, I am going with the flow, this will be good for everyone.” This is called lying to yourself.  I did some things.  I had some ideas. I traveled. I got in shape. I spent time with myself. I got a dog. It’s a cliche to call this a mid-life crisis, but I am 45 and while I wouldn’t necessarily say I was in crisis, I was certainly searching for meaning.

One of my priorities in 2017 is to share more; both in this space and on this blog.  I have to believe I am not the only person who’s life hasn’t exactly gone as planned ( planned, wtf?) and perhaps my thoughts and comments here will help others who are going through similar life changes.  I don’t have the answers, and rarely even know the questions, but if anyone out there wants to chat, connect or share, I am all ears.  Talking helps.

Annnnnndd…. Queue awkward segue to Best of 2016 list…

Anyone who knows me, knows I am all about the music.  For many reasons, 2016 was a rough year.  We said goodbye to many of our heroes, and elected a fucking clown as President.  Interestingly, it was a very good year for music.  With that spirit, I have put together the laziest playlist ever – sorry.  I just dumped all my favorite albums into one list!!

Spotify:

 

 

Vampire Weekend 3/26 review (well, almost)

So I started a blog, posted two brief posts (“posted two brief posts”, hmmm, Strunk and White would be proud) then sort of disappeared. How lame of me. So here goes an honest to goodness new post.

Jamie and I secured a babysitter (Michelle, who lives down the street, “Yo, what up Michelle?”) and once nine o’clock rolled around we headed out to Neumo’s arriving around 9:15. Both of us were tired, and I was fighting a cold, but we were genuinely excited to be out together and about to see a show.

As we approached Neumo’s we were greeted with the old “who needs tickets” from a scruffy hipster looking to make some money. After all this was Vampire Weekend and the show was sold out. VM now eclipsing Artic Monkeys, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Yeasayer in hype factor.

As we moved through the front door, I stole a glance at the timings of when the bands would be performing – that’s when I saw it in bold ominous letters – “Vampire Weekend 10:45 PM”. My heart sank – not sure why I thought they would be going on earlier, but I did, and I surrendered. My fragile eggshell mind cracked – there was absolutely no way I could make it. “10:45 PM? Are you shitting me? I have work tomorrow, and two kids that rise with the roosters!” Jamie concurred – there is no way we would still be standing by the time the band took the stage. I suggested I sell the tickets and Jamie go get herself a drink at Moe, next door. I figured I would sell tickets then meet her over at Moe.

Selling the tickets was not a problem, and I was soon joining Jamie at Moe. The highlight of the evening was witnessing Jamie so excited to be out on a school night. She was beaming, bouncing around the bar, striking up little conversations with strangers here and there. Being happy, having fun. Good times.

I think two guys hit on her, one right while I was walking in asking her what she thought of Yacht (the opening band).

Guy: “What do you know about Yacht?”

Jamie: “Well, my grandmother used to have one, and as a child we would take it to Catalina Island for the weekend”.

Guy: (Furrowing brow, scratching head) “No, no the opening band !”

Jamie: (Almost a spit-take, then just doubled over laughing)

Just a hilarious moment that just cracked us all up.

All in all we missed the show but had a great time out at Moe, having a few drinks, mingling with the hipsters and grooving to the DJ – we need to do that more often. We both forgot about the children and parenting for a couple of hours and remembered what it was like to be out without a care in the world, just enjoying ourselves. Precisely the sort of things that we did back when we were dating; way before marriage and kids.

Bed is made, sweaters are on, tickets were bought

Yup, Jamie and I are heading to the Vampire Weekend show over at Neumos on March 26th. It is rare that we attend a show together anymore, so I am really looking forward to this. More often than not she is just too tired after a day spent parenting the kids to stay out late. In fact when I mentioned the show to her in an effort to gauge her interest, her response was “What time do you think it will end?”