Friday, November 10, 2023

Andy Young: Friendly advice on how to be a friend

By Andy Young

Good friends are truly priceless.

Good friends can be family members, neighbors, colleagues, people you share interests with, or some combination of those things, but don’t necessarily have to be any of them.

The best way to have a good friend is to be one.

However, for those needing more specific advice on the subject, here it is.

Good friends always share their knowledge, their possessions, and their time, even when it’s inconvenient. Especially when it’s inconvenient.

Good friends always provide a shoulder to cry on, secure in the knowledge they can cry on yours if need be.

Good friends always tell you the truth, even when they know you’d rather not hear it.

Good friends invite you to drive across the country with them.

Good friends find room for you in their home when you’re passing through.

Good friends put you on their softball team, even when you’re the youngest (or the oldest) player on the roster.

Good friends make you their assistant soccer coach, and then teach you the rules of soccer.

Good friends get you cool gigs with ESPN during school vacations.

Good friends arrange for you to get that job you want in far-off Durham, North Carolina.

More good friends subsequently get you further professional opportunities in Burlington, North Carolina; Vero Beach, Florida; Butte, Montana, and Portland, Maine.

Good friends secure you an interview for a teaching job in your new home state, even when you have no relevant experience.

Good friends let you emcee their athletic banquet every year.

Good friends send treats to the students in your class, even though they’ve never met any of them.

Good friends always fire you an outlet pass after grabbing the rebound. They also help the kids in the high school auto shop to keep your $200 car running for four years.

Good friends send you postcards, letters, text messages, or email from around the world…or from down the street.

Good friends lend you their ladder or their lawn mower and know they can borrow yours when they need to.

Good friends randomly cut your grass or shovel your driveway, recognizing you’d do the same for them.

Good friends help you find a safe place to live.

Good friends let you write for their newspaper.

Good friends don’t let politics (theirs or yours) sour your relationship.

Good friends ask you to speak at their wedding.

Good friends let you live your life and know you won’t judge how they live theirs.

Good friends not only help you survive the most boring classes ever, they make attending them fun.

Good friends carpool with you.

Good friends love you despite any (or all) of your shortcomings.

Good friends help you lift heavy things.

Good friends don’t pass you the queen of spades.

Good friends pick up the check, and don’t argue when you pick up the check first.

Good friends also never keep track of how long it’s been since you actually did pick up the check.

Good friends get you on their team at your school’s alumni hockey game, and don’t get mad when you’re a minus 10 that night.

Good friends are people you babysat for who still stay in touch.

Good friends don’t hold grudges, even after you’ve sideswiped a guard rail while driving their car at 60 mph.

Good friends commit random kindnesses.

If one or more of the traits listed above are true of you, you undoubtedly qualify as a good friend.

And, if you think one of the citations above refers specifically to you, well, there’s a simple explanation for that.

It does. <

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