Li’l Thinks - Friends by Kate Carraway
Illustration by Penelope Gazin
I pushed him into a snow bank on the way home from the bar. He was drunk and had to pee and went down, soft like a wool mitten, and then got up, and then I pushed him down again. I hadn’t—this should be “haven’t”—seen this dude in, like, three years, but that—the “pfooo” of a grown-up man falling slow and landing face down in the fresh snow, the 2 AM winter-empty side-street echo of us scream-laughing, hard—repeats, for me, as something like an advertisement, not for friendship exactly, but more specifically for the corny, syrupy-sweet juvenilia that is what I liked so much about how and who we were when we were together.
Friendship is a constantly self-renewing frontier of human relationships, a Wild West of emotional and temporal adventure times. Without the common and commonly necessary strictures that the lamer side of biology and collective culture and whoever else is set up to dictate sexual, romantic relationships, and without the near-eternal nature of literal families, friendship is expansive and truly wild. It’s the only type of relationship that can run steadily for months or years or ever-afters, without sliding down an emotional valley or being punctured by another person’s need or someone else’s betrayal. Of all the ways for two people to be together, and be in some kind of love, it’s the way that is most defined by genuine, wanted, cohesive closeness—the kind that can only be created by making a choice that isn’t required by law or money or blood or boners, and least of all by obligation. The stuff of great friendships applies to shy kindergarteners sharing a snack as much as it does to Carl Reiner and Mel Brooks watching movies together after dinner.
I wrote an “Obseshes” column (my last, I think, for now/a while/ever… I kind of quit but it took me five days to do it because I didn’t want to, but kind of had to in order to keep up on my more grown-up-ish feature stuff) for VICE about how I love punk and am not a punk. DEDICATED TO HANK, as is my Twitter bio.
Attention Toronto people:
Starting sooooon, I will be doing two new columns for The Grid, and I want YOU or your single friends to be involved. Cool? Cool.
The first thing is called “Grid Dates.” It will be replacing my now-two-year-old advice column “Thirtyish” on the back page of the magazine. Each week, “Grid Dates” will feature a different, single Torontonian’s dating profile - online comes to print! What! - including a photo, all of the usual questions you’d see in a dating profile, as well as some more interesting, more revealing stuff. So this will be partly just fun (like our “Dating Diaries” column) and partly instructional and demystifying for our readers who need help with their own profiles, and partly A WAY TO GET A DAAAATE! Basically, it is a huge free advertisement for yourself. If you want to get involved email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The second thing is called “Hookups.” It will be a weekly online column based on our very, very popular “We Hook You Up” feature in the annual “Dating Diaries Issue.” (See this for a good example of how it goes down.) I will create the set-ups myself, and as my friends can tell you, I am very very very good at this and have several marriages under my matchmaking belt! Each week I’ll send two single Torontonians on a fun, FREE date somewhere in the city. We are partnering with PR firms and date venues, so all you have to do is show up and have fun, and then tell me all about the date the next day. If you want to get involved, email email@example.com. (I especially want to hear from straight guys, and gay and lesbian peeps.)
There will totally be crossover between these two columns, and maybe even past “Dating Diaries” or “Dating Diaries Issue”s. You can be involved in any/all of the columns.
PLEASE share this with your friends and friends-of-friends! Toronto can be a cold, tough city for loooooove so The Grid and I are going to do everything we can to inspire some romance. Anyone, anytime can shoot me an email with questions or whatever, here or at Kate@thegridto.com.
Let me just test out my Tumblr for a sec ok?
Here are some details about my current teaching (“teaching”) stuff:
I taught Creative Journalism (and Creative Journalism II) at the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies for a long while. I loooooooved it, or, I loved the teaching and reading and talking and marking part. (But, not the be-in-the-same-place-at-the-same-time-every-week-for-months part.) Now, I’m teaching one-on-one styles. Specifically, I’m doing private sessions of writing instruction, editing and personalized consultation. (I also sometimes do career consultation, but way less often.) Most of my students are interested in developing their voice and style.
If that’s something you’re into, here are the details:
The standard session is in two parts totaling three hours, and costs $300 + HST. This includes a shorter consultation about what you are working on, what you want to do with it, and how I can help, and the (longer) personal instruction session. If you’re in Toronto, this can be in person, but I can also do Skype, phone, email, whatever. (I need about a week in-between to review your stuff.)
I’m also offering additional sessions for $100 per hour of in-person-or-whatever instruction, but it is important that the first session includes time for the initial consultation and review, so I will know enough about your work to actually help.
If you’re into it or have questions or whatever else, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thaaaanks!
I enjoy the gesture involved in this, especially.
***screams; sips coffee***
Basically, I realized I was living in that awful stage of life between twenty-six to and thirty-seven known as stupidity. It’s when you don’t know anything, not even as much as you did when you were younger, and you don’t even have a philosophy about all the things you don’t know, the way you did when you were twenty or would again when you were thirty-eight.
Lorrie Moore (via snpsnpsnp)
Whaaaaaaaaat noooooooooooooooooo *lays on floor; cries*