I appear to have lost the friendship of someone I know recently. I don't know why. So now I am musing about this phenomenon. For readers, the first story is not about the friendship I have lost recently. The second story is about the new loss.
I've you've read this journal back to older entries, you're probably aware that my bestest bud in the whole world is Jason (mrsloane). I've known him since I was around 5 years old. We used to get in trouble together. My first time drinking was with him. etc. etc. etc. If you read my "Ode to Jason" a while back, you'll have noticed that I mentioned that we have been angry with each other on occasion and have drifted apart for periods of time. My first story is the story of the last incident from my point of view. His is quite different I am sure.
Jason's wife divorced him about 3 years ago. I don't write "got divorced" as I want to make clear this was an active undertaking that didn't "just happen" as passive voice is wont to imply. One month she was in love with him, and the next month she wasn't (and claimed she never had been). Her behavior during the breakup was erratic and quite unfair to Jason. He was blindsided and pretty hurt by this. I maintained contact with her, partially because for a period I worked with her. Although I no longer really considered her a friend, more of an acquaintance.
This is when Jason started drinking again. It was heavy, but I viewed it as something he needed to do to blow off steam. We had fun. Over the course of the last 2.5 years Jason and I went about carousing and having a good time. He went through a number of girlfriends, including Laura and Leanne who both figure prominently in this story. Laura is a loud, bossy, large woman with whom I apparently went to high school. I don't really remember high school, and she was a class ahead of me. Their relationship was short, but in that time I started a friendship with her as well. Several months later, Jason started seeing Leanne, who was a friend and co-worker of Laura's. Laura took that as a betrayal and treated the two of them pretty poorly for the next couple of years.
Over this time, Jason drank ever more heavily and, in my mind, became somewhat unreliable. And as some of you know, he can be an ass when drinking. Last year, I acquired tickets to a Mariners game and asked him if he wanted to go. He agreed. But the night before he stayed out drinking with Leanne and I couldn't find him in the morning for the game. I went by his parents' house. They thought he might be at Leanne's. No answer on his cell. I called Leanne. I got a hold of him. He didn't want to go anymore. I told him he was. I ended up going back to his parents' to pick up some clothes, and then over to Leanne's to get him. We got to the game sometime in the 3rd inning. I was a little peeved. After that I decided to wait for him to pull out of his binge and become more reliable before I made an effort to arrange goings-on with him.
That is from my point of view. From his point of view, I'm sure he was annoyed at my continuing contact with Rachel and Laura. When he had started seeing Leanne, I was the one who (mostly unintentionally) broke the news to Laura, thereby setting off more of her poor treatment of Jason. He and Laura really couldn't be around each other, so the mere fact that I spent any time with her limited the amount of time he could hang with me. He may have had other issues with my general attitude at the time as well.
So from late spring of 2001 until Christmas, Jason and I barely talked. I occasionally said hi when I ran into him at a club. He did the same. I was alternately hurt and pissed at the division between us. On Christmas morning, Matt died. Matt is my brother, and Jason's parents were his godparents. I went out to the clubs a lot afterward in an attempt to get my mind off Matt and away from the throngs of grieving relatives that besieged my family and my phone. The funeral was January 2nd, and Jason was there. I cried on his shoulder. When it was important, Jason discarded his resentment of me, and I discarded my resentment of him. The next night he dragged me off to Deja Vu in Lake City to take my mind off things. Because, as he put it, "Matt would have wanted you to do this." Which was true. Although it was a colossal failure at anything titillating. (I've never really understood the concept of strip clubs, but that's another entry.)
Since then, both of us have realized that our resentments at each other were petty. And, as is typical of guys, we didn't even talk about it. No grand rapprochement. Nothing. It was just understood. Most readers seem to think we are bound at the hip. My most frequent question heard when I am out is "Where's Jason?" To which I usually respond wryly, "You know, we don't talk all the time."
The second story and the one that has got me musing regards Laura. As I wrote, she's large, loud, and bossy. But she is a lot of fun to be around, and when you get Laura involved, things happen. So for the most part I enjoy hanging with Laura. Sometimes the drama intrudes too much and I resent it. In fact, I've written at least one entry specifically about that. But overall she's a great and good person. I called her from my hotel room in Lynden after Matt died. Her first response to me was "Do you need me to come up there? I can drop everything." This was Christmas evening. When a friend is in need, she does not hesitate.
One of Laura's beefs with me this spring has been that I am "too into the scene." The industrial club scene in Seattle used to be her place. But she's stepped back from it as she's become anti-social at times. I never was part of it, but "joined up" this spring and have made more and more friends within this group. For the most part, they have been very welcoming and accepting of someone who at heart isn't a goth or rivet-head. And I enjoy it. Laura appeared to be pretty resentful and chastised me for it.
After I got back from Las Vegas, I called Laura several times, but she never returned my calls. I actually spoke to her once at work, but she shuffled me off as she had "people standing at my desk." At that point I knew I was on the outs with her, as in the past she would continue to conduct business with her underlings even when on the phone with me or other friends. I've said hello to her when I've run into her at clubs. But beyond that I have no contact with her now. I've given up on her returning my calls.
This saddens me. I don't like to lose a friend. And I don't know what perceived slight has resulted in this. Theories from mutual friends point to my making friends in "the scene" but even they are baffled. Or at least they are not telling me. I've seen her do this to other people, where she was ticked for some reason and was quite articulate about her reason. I had always thought that these reasons came out in some kind of blow-up with the person and they knew what was up. But now, once I find myself subject to the same treatment, I find that others report the same thing. They were excommunicated and never really knew why.
So I am hoping that this turns out much like my friendship with Jason. That at one point we will patch things up. With Jason, however, I knew it would happen. Even at the time, I knew it was temporary. Part of it was the reasoning behind taking a step back. Part of it was simply having a 25year history with the man. I have a 2 year history with Laura, so I don't know if this will resolve itself. I sure would like it to.