Tag Archive: friendship

Mumford and Fish

Mumford and Fish

These are three of my best friends: Dunc, Majay and Rob. And missing from that pic is Reegs who is also one of my longest life buddies. And of course my wife, the beautiful Val [aka tbV, which so many of you keep thinking stands for The Lovely Val because of, um, the B, obviously] who made this photo [taken at my 40th after these clowns performed a satirical rendition of one of my favourite Mumford songs complete with homemade pizza box guitar and changed up lyrics] possible, plus of course let’s not forget the boob cake. Continue reading


Hm, this is a bit of a difficult one as i think i only know one person who does this. And it’s me!

But maybe you know someone else. And i think i’m getting better although it does take a lot of work.

Did you ever know someone who interrupted you when you were speaking purely because they were so excited about what they had to say [as opposed to intentionally wanting to interrupt or anything] and in my case quite possibly also because of the likelihood of me forgetting what it is before i get my chance.

But it’s rude. And i’m guilty. And as i said i’ve been getting better at not interrupting or catching myself halfway through as i do, but there is still work to be done.

i believe the underlying belief with this one is that what i have to say is more important than what you have to say. i have this idea that is so great, that it can’t wait and needs to be expressed now. How terrible is that? Anyone, besides me, coming to mind?

And i don’t think that in the moment you are sitting there thinking, “Man, this thing i thought of to say is better than anything else going on here” but that is kind of the message that gets sent. It probably ties in a little bit with the not properly listening one although in my case i think it is usually triggered by something someone says and so i want to respond straight away instead of waiting my turn.

i can only imagine how frustrating that must be to the one being interrupted and i’m sorry. But this is another one that needs to be worked at and stopped altogether. One solution i’ve found that works is holding a finger up to remind me that i have something to say and it usually reminds me of what it is i want to say as well. But then making sure i let the person finish speaking completely before jumping in. And continue to listen and engage well with what they are saying.

What other habits do you see in your friends worth writing a post about to warn those who may not be aware that they do it? What irritates you the most about bad habits people have that cause you to be wary of befriending them?

[For the next part in this series looking at being Late and ticking ‘Maybe’ to FB events]


So far we’ve looked at the Early Responder and the Planner Aheader as two types of friends that should really look at upping their game, and this third habit is right up there.

Did you ever know someone who spoke about themself. Like always. Like non-stop. Incessantly? i knew someone like that and it quickly became quite tiring. You spend an hour with your friend and realise that you’ve only said five sentences? That the person spoke for forty minutes non-stop and then turned the conversation to something about you and within a minute had sequed it back to being something about them. Or segwayed as i like to say. They totally segwayed it back to being about them…


And about as exciting, incidentally. While it is important and worthwhile and good to hear about your friend, it can be a bit much if it is always about them, all the time.

How about you? Know anyone like this? Found any remedy for it or do you just spend less time with them unless you just want to be alone with someone else present?


[For the next part looking at someone so excited they interrupt, click here]



A slightly more subtle one, which i have found myself guilty of, is composing an answer or response while the person is speaking [to give once they are finished] instead of giving them your full attention.

While this is not [to me] as bad as responding before someone has finished, this also shows a less than complete interest in what the person you are talking to is saying to you. It also suggests that you know what they are going to say rather than giving them the opportunity to surprise you or misdirect or story twist or anything like that.

It’s lazy. And it’s less than fully loving. And if you want to be a better friend and this is something you do, then you should stop.

I have found it really is about focus and being intentional. i find i tend to slip into this more when i am tired and so often it’s just a case of knowing when to dive into a deep conversation or when it might be better to postpone it til another time when you can be more focused.

So not a game changer i don’t think. Just something that if you do it you need to work on. But how about you? Have you ever found yourself doing this? Have you suspected someone else of doing it to you? How strongly do you feel about this?

[For the one about that friend that always speaks only about themselves, click here]

Lucy and Charlie Brown

How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days pic

If you have a good friend you’re trying to get rid of… oh wait, that only happens in the movies, right?

Well how about a friend you want to keep or make? From time to time i hear people complaining that they don’t have any close friends as if the Close Friend Fairy has passed them by [Did you put your old friends under your pillow?]

As cheesesome as it may seem, i believe it’s true that the best way to make a good friend is to be one. And since i don’t think i’ve posted all that much on Friendship on my blog, i thought it was high time to give it some play. But before we get to what makes a good friend, i thought it might be helpful to hear some of the things that are likely to make people [well, me!] head for the hills in a metaphorical kind of lope.

This is a chance for you to self-evaluate and, if you do any of these things, to consider stopping them, both for the sake of any present friends you might have and also for the sake of future friends. We’ll get to the good stuff later.

i don’t know if i’ll quite hit 10, but let’s see and as i go along, if you can think of something to add to the list, please feel free to add it to the comments and i might make a post of it:

Here are Ten Ways to Lose a Friend in an as yet undetermined number of days:

[1] Early Responder – You know that person who responds before the respond moment in a sentence?

[2] Planning ahead – Your friend is still talking but you are already working on your answer.

[3] Just me – Ever have a friend who was a master at turning the conversation to be about themselves all the time?

[4] Rudely Excited – Sadly this one is my rudeness, but i’m getting better – excited interruptions…

[5] Late and Worse – You know that friend who is regularly late and a bonus look at Facebook Event “Maybe”

It has been so great being back in Americaland for a month for a number of reasons.

One of those has been finding the opportunity to watch the first Peter Capaldi season of Doctor Who, which i finally finished last night. He can stay.


As with the other doctors it felt like it took him a little bit of time to find his feet but i think he has now and so am very much looking forward to the next season when he jumps in owning the identity.

With each new regeneration [every time a new actor plays Doctor Who the storyline accomodates it by changing the appearance and characteristics of the character] there is a different flavour of the Doctor and i am really enjoying this one.

But the stand out moment on the show was when his companion, Clara Oswald [played brilliantly by Jenna Coleman], who was suffering deep grief from an event that had just happened in her life, had a moment of betrayal of her best friend and this conversation happens shortly afterwards:

Clara: You’re going to help me?

The Doctor: Well, why wouldn’t I help you?

Clara: Because of what I just did, I just…

The Doctor: You betrayed me. You betrayed our trust, you betrayed our friendship, you betrayed everything that I’ve ever stood for. You let me down!

Clara: Then why are you helping me?

The Doctor: Why? Do you think that I care for you so little that betraying me would make a difference?

Boom! Right between the eyes. Doctor Who drops the mic and leaves the stage…

But imagine if we thought and lived like that?

Powerful, powerful stuff.



From Chapter 20 of ‘Robert Sobukwe: How Can Man Die Better’ by Benjamin Pogrund:

‘We [Robert and Benjamin] had three days of incessant talking and sharing emotions and thoughts. My dominant sense about him was his optimism about himself and South Africa. It helped him to endure the experience of being plunged back into the reality of everyday apartheid living. We also went through the details of a brotherly pact. I would continue to do whatever my means allowed to help him and the family, whether financially or otherwise; there would be a minimum of thank yous. In due course, if our roles were ever reversed and I landed up in need of help, he would help me to the best of his ability – and again, with a minimum of thank yous. Both of us would be frank in stating our needs and what each of us could do for the other. As Sobukwe was to say in a later letter, ‘the truth between us; that is our bargain.’ 

Short and to the point, but this paragraph stood out to me. Both for the strength of the brotherly pact between two, on the surface, very different looking men, and for the slogan of honesty. We will say what we need and we will do what we are able to and with a minimum of thankx. The realisation is always that if i am in your shoes the same thing will happen. What a strong bond and a challenge to us in our friendships. I can list many names of people in my life who have been this for me or done this with me. I’m not giving to you so that one day you will give to me. I am giving to you. One day you may give to me. Whoever can meet the need, does. Love it.

[For the next part on being the bigger man, click here]

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