‘What’s Yer Major?’

August 7, 2007

The nearing of school brings me back to last year and all the introductions. “Hi, what’s your name?” Now you know what to call the person. “Where are you from?” Now you know the general mannerisms to expect from the person. “Oh yeah, and what’s your major?” And now you know how to judge them in their entirety.

Funny how those three things were really all you cared about. At least at first. Beyond those first moments of traveling from stranger to acquaintance, there were many more opportunities to grow even closer, even to the point of close friend and occasionally, best friend.

But at first, all you needed were three pieces of information. Name, Hometown, and Major. There you had it. [more…]


Friendship the D. Darmon Way

September 5, 2006

Making friends has never really come naturally to me. Now, being made a friend is another thing. And making friends over a long period of time I can do. But just spontaneously going out and making friends, that’s never been my gig. I usually wait for some gregarious, nice person to pick me up and take me along with their group. Upon adoption into their group, I normally become the “quiet” one that everyone enjoys the company of but doesn’t really expect much from socially. As my nickname from Middle School Marching band, Silent Bob, implies, I become the guy that just brings his presence, not necessarily his words, to the group. Or as others have called me (most recently someone at college), I’m the Eeyore of the group, the likeable, slightly melancholy voice of “reason.”

I hadn’t realized how much I’d moved away from this process while at Chi High until I got to college and I resorted to it again. While at Chi, I would either (a) not really worry about making many new friends or (b) become extra-outgoing with underclassmen. Both of these behaviors probably resulted from feeling extremely comfortable with my social standing at Chi. I felt so comfortable with who I knew and how people knew me that I felt safe to exit my shell and act extroverted.

Now that I’m at college, knowing noone but Brett and Helen Ann, I find myself back in the Eeyore / Silent Bob role. Back to where I was in middle school and early high school. Noone’s really adopted me yet. I don’t have a group of friends that I consistently hang out with as the quiet but likeable member. Though in a way, that’s the place I’ve taken / made for myself in the Cross Country team. And that’s the place I’m making for myself in the Jazz Band.

Maybe after a few years here (surely by next year) I’ll feel comfortable enough in my own skin to approach the extroverted high school version of myself that I’d developed. Interestingly, as soon as I return to Chi, I put that “extroverted” hat right back on and feel comfortable talking to all the underclassmen and my fellow graduates. That tells me that this ability lies dormant within me, waiting for the “comfort” level to rise to a demarcated place before I tap into it. Weird.

Interesting how my life goes in cycles. I know this cycle will pass. And there’s nothing “wrong” about this cycle. It just is.