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Lend me a stranger

I am not too sure what friends really mean...I think a passing smile, a fraction of a glance, a polite voice over the phone by strangers is less cumbersome to deal with.

At least there is no exchange of unspoken guarantees and promises of no expiry dates like all sturdy friendships demand.

I have resisted several friendships because I was not sure the person was genuine or if I felt that I would not be able to give my time and space. I am happy enough with those fleeting moments connecting with strangers who do not even have to say goodbye.

A friend who comes and goes is as much a stranger...a friend who takes another for granted is behaving in a strange fashion...a friend who has to keep several considerations in mind to keep up the friendship is a stranger...a friend who you are close to physically but cannot share things with is a stranger...a friend who inhabits your mind but not your heart is a stranger...a friend you feel for but can do nothing about is a stranger...

There is a world of friends and there is a world of strangers...and there is a world of choices we have to make and those that others make for us.

Often we get hurt because we cannot tell the two apart. Sometimes, one takes time out to sort out the confusion. For example, I know I am committed to certain things...I am willing to go half way. The question gets complicated when after reaching the halfway mark you find you have either lost your way or the point you are at is the same where you started.

Nothing can exist in isolation. I now let life do the talking for me. I shall go where Destiny takes me. It is anyway a better judge than I am.

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New Standardized Friendship Contract Form

Here...this should take all the guesswork out!

FRIENDSHIP CONTRACT

Be it known that the undersigned ________________  and ______________ ,  being of sound mind, agree to enter this contract, legally binding said parties as FRIENDS, for a period of one year from the signing of this contract.  This contract may be terminated at any time by either party for infractions as specified below:

1) Being an inconsiderate jerk

2) Just because.

3) Either party having found a better friend.

 Signed and notarized by ___________________ on ___________________

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:-)

 Eric, I'd have paid you legal fees for this, except for the proviso you added: "being of sound mind".

Further, the infractions need to be defined and agreed upon by both parties.

1. An inconsiderate jerk is one who...

2. Just because (not necessary, personal whimsies cannot be defined ergo "sound mind" would negate the purpose).

3. What is better? And what is good?

Now that all the guesswork is out, I don't wanna make any friendship!

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Zhuangzi on friendship

莊子曰:
君子之交淡若水
小人之交甘若醴
君子淡以親
小人甘以絕

My parents have always warned me about warming up to someone in a flash. A more prosaic way of putting things is: In friendships, don't tailgate--maintain a safe and polite distance-- or you may come to a collision.

Master Zhuang said:

The gentleman's friendship is as diffuse as water
A petty man's friendship is as cloying as sweet wine
A gentleman's diffuseness results in lasting bond
A petty man's cloying sweetness leads to severance

or another attempt at translation:

 

Master Zhuang said:

The gentleman's associations are as diffuse as water
A petty man's associations are as cloying as sweet wine
A gentleman's diffuseness results in lasting bonds
A petty man's cloying sweetness leads to severance

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Thanks for sharing Zhuang...

Just wondering, though, what happens when water turns to wine?