I somehow missed that book in middle school.
It's different in Brazil. Down There, you just ARE friends. There isn't any ice to break - any rules to follow. You state your name and - bam! - friends. No social faux pas, no silly mannerisms or facade to keep up. These people have no tact, and no secrets. Everyone is everyone's best friend by default.
I forget that it's not like that Here.
I got invited to the pool the other day (so! so! excited! okay, That Girl, calm down, play it cool, don't act as desperate as you are ....) with two other ladies. Collected, chic females with masters degrees in the Handbook. Plenty of light banter and polite conversation. I had trouble eating that night for all the times I bit my tongue. (No! don't gush too much about how grateful you are for the invite ... No! don't tell them how much your feet sweat here ... No! don't tell them your children's birth stories ....)
Frank. That's my new name.
(I think I came on a little strong.)
Truth is, there really is structure to this whole Friend thing. You can't be clingy. Weird. Open. Snooty. Dirty. Gross. Crude. Fake. Shallow. Scary. Shy.
Maybe that's why blogging lends itself to friendships so easily. We have no walls. We are who we are; we read who we read.
And we just ARE friends.