Friday, September 28, 2007

What is a Friend?

I have been thinking a lot this past week about what being a friend really means. I looked up the definition and found this:

1. A person whom one knows, likes, and trusts.
2. A person whom one knows; an acquaintance.
3. A person with whom one is allied in a struggle or cause; a comrade.
4. One who supports, sympathizes with, or patronizes a group, cause, or movement: friends of the clean air movement.

After the events of this past week, I don't like or trust a bunch of people I thought were my friends. Goodbye and good riddance. Guess I needed the wakeup call. I suppose I ought to think of it as a blessing in disguise, but I can't help feeling sad and hurt and confused just the same.

I guess I just want to believe that people are basically good until proven otherwise. Sadly (and ironically) it takes Bruce Springsteen--a performer known for his generosity and humanitarianism--to really bring out the absolute worst in people. It's been real easy to feel sorry for myself this week, but I'm not going to do it, not while there are kids lying in hospital beds missing legs, arms, sight or hearing, kids who have become vegetables before they were even old enough to take a drink legally. So no, I won't feel too bad about things. I'll just work really hard at remembering what true friendship and sacrifice are, and at not taking anything I have for granted. That's what Bruce's message has always been--living each day to the fullest, being in the moment, treating each other with courtesy and respect. After all, even if I didn't get into any of the three rehearsal shows this week, I still have ears to hear them with. And even if several of my so-called friends were nowhere to be found, I know that I am still a good person. I will not sell myself out for the companionship of people who only think of themselves.

If it takes being a liar, a conniver or a cheat to get in to see Bruce Springsteen, I guess I'm not going to be attending too many shows on this upcoming tour. Which is good, because other people need my money and support more than he does.

"Step into the light."