Tag Archives: friends

My boyfriend’s best friend is dreamy

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First up, full disclosure: I don’t currently have a boyfriend.

This is why I think I have waited until this golden, shining singleton moment to confess that I have never failed to have a thing for the quirky sidekick of the leading men in my life. It’s a little tricky (not to mention risky) to write this post when you’re in a relationship.

Of course I have never acted on these crushes over the years. In reality, no matter how deliciously understanding, cute, sweet and funny your boyfriend’s best friend is, the true reason for his appeal is that he is similar to your boyfriend but you don’t have to deal with his annoying habits. You get to hold onto the fantasy that he is like your boyfriend, but without the stuff that makes you grind your teeth at night. You know, those things that your boyfriend says or does that you try to ‘work’ through, but are really concerned are giving you a stomach ulcer due to all of your repressed anger and frustration.

However, it’s an entirely different situation in movies. The quirky boy best friends are exceptionally awesome and, quite often, are shunned by the girl even when they prove they are far more worthy than the leading man.

So without further ado, here is my tribute to the unsung heroes of film: the guys on the sidelines who I firmly believe should have been chosen over the guy saying, “Sorry, just realised I have been a complete tosser this whole time, but I love you. Lucky you. Will you marry me?” at the end of the movie.

Jon Cryer, Pretty in Pink.

Jon Cryer, Pretty in Pink.

1. Classic Jon Cryer. How can you turn down a young man named Ducky? He sang to you, Ringwald, he sang to you. And side note, I don’t know, I just don’t think that dress is quite… there yet.

John Krasinski, Something Borrowed.

2. Are you kidding me, Ginnifer?? What kind of name is Ginnifer? Ginnifer is the Molly Ringwald of the present day, I’ve just decided. Nothing like a close, loyal, smart, funny friend who you love dearly and is JOHN KRASINSKI, the nicest guy on the planet after Steve Carrell, when you can try to be with a guy who fell for your ditzy, self-absorbed ‘best friend’ and isn’t sure a relationship with you looks right.

Jason Biggs, My Best Friend’s Girl.

3. I refer to My Best Friend’s Girl yet again. This movie contains so many ‘what the f*@#!’ moments for me. Sure, the pie guy comes on a little strong in this one but if we’re holding him up against Dane La Douche Cook? Neither guy wins on the names though. Tank and Dusty? Sounds like an ill-written children’s book about a couple of scrappy mutts comically awaiting adoption at the local pound, lest they be sent to doggy heaven. Alec Baldwin should have been called Rover. But hey, at least Kate Hudson’s character was named after Joan Collins in Dynasty. Ok, I’ll stop it on the name criticism. But seriously, Hollywood.

Jason Lee, Chasing Amy.

4. Banky Edwards. Now I’m not saying Alyssa Jones had a shot with him (due to his predilection for dick and fart jokes), but maybe I would have taken a moment’s pause to consider the uh, offer in that living room scene at the end. Grown men who can pull off a backwards baseball cap are my weakness. Very few can. Many try.

Mark Ruffalo, Rumor Has It.

5. Ok, Jennifer Aniston, really try to concentrate this time. Mark Ruffalo or Kevin Costner? NO, GODDAMNIT! … Ok. I’m sorry. I’m going to ask you one last time. Ok. Maark, as in the handsome guy who rocked Meg Ryan’s world in In the Cut, or Kevin? Now remember, Kevin was in Waterworld. And you thought he was your father. Thank god she gets it right in the end at least.

Ed Norton, Fight Club.

6. This one isn’t entirely valid because well, 14-year-old spoiler alert, Helena Bonham Carter did actually choose Ed Norton, but to my mind, Ed is the sexier version of Brad Pitt, not the other way around as it is presented to us. Like if they were really separate people, I would be all about Ed.

Ed Norton, Keeping the Faith.

7. Ed Norton, part two. Keeping the Faith – why doesn’t Dharma, I mean Jenna Elfman, pick Ed over Ben Stiller? Given Ed directed this movie, I’m guessing it’s because he’s humble. Which makes me love him even more.

Adam Goldberg, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.

8. Adam Goldberg. His character is witty, articulate and gets the leading man to see reason about the lady in the end, before she gets away. Just imagine Adam on the motorbike to the tune of the best Gin Blossoms song in the movie’s finale, instead of the guy who communicates via a series of grunts, squeals and chin thrusts. Best line from McConaughey in the movie: “Naw, naw, naw, naw, naw, come oon, man, hoooooooo!” Use your words, Matthew.

Ron Livingston, Buying the Cow.

9. Three words, Bridgette Wilson: spoilt for choice. Your boyfriend’s friends include Ryan Reynolds and Ron (slacker has never been made more sexy) Livingston and you’ve gone with the crybaby who couldn’t cross a bridge in Stand by Me. And you’re a smoking hot blonde. I may also be looking at you, Rebecca Romijn. Not going to rub it in though, Bridgette, you paid the price for your mistake. We’ve all been there.

Jon Favreau, The Break Up.

10. Putting this one out there… Jon Favreau. He’s got that big bear thing like Javier Bardem that makes me just wanna sit on his lap. No, just me? Ok, never mind. I also don’t have dreams about Pete Hornberger from 30 Rock taking me out to a dive bar for beers and under-the-table knee rubs. Really, I don’t.

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Y it’s not a dirty letter

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Lena Dunham: another Gen Y'er who just expects handouts... in exchange for her hard work, talent, and courage to break new ground.

Lena Dunham: another Gen Y’er who just expects handouts… in exchange for her hard work, talent, and courage to break new ground.

So you’ve heard how the conversation starts, right?

“That’s not how it was in my day…”

“Yeah, it’s so much easier for them now. They don’t want to have to work for anything.”

“It’s all just ‘me, me, me’ and ‘I want it now’.”

“Flamin’ mongrels.”

Ok, so I may have gone to the Alf side there for a second, but hey, that’s me, I’m Generation Y, we’re sooo random.

Most of the time, my Gen Y comrades and I just nod and smile during those workplace conversations. Yes, we are lucky. Yes, we don’t have to fight for so much. Yes, the world is our oyster. What can we say, we’re younger, our lives are ahead of us, we’re not going to win this argument, just be grateful and smile.

All of this is fine… to a point. That point is when a complete stranger starts accusing me across a meeting room table of being a passive, consumerist, spoilt brat.

Well, the issue of good manners aside, does this very forward gentleman have a point? (My use of the word ‘gentleman’ there is part of a little game I like to play in all my writing called ‘Spot the sarcasm’.)

Have we just wandered into the world, ready to take whatever is handed to us? By the end of our lives, will we have made no mark other than to contribute to a healthier economy through our spendthrift ways?

This man, a former radical and member of Generation X, was in the midst of planning an exhibition and party for himself and the other former members of his ragtag team that published naughty things back in the 1970s and ‘80s.

I was actually pretty excited to meet them but his combative attitude, his distaste for my involvement due to my age and obvious ignorance was like a glass of ice cold water poured over my flickering candle of admiration.

As a younger generation, are we allowed to fight back?

Well, Generation X certainly did. But how exactly?

Those who weren’t known for being disaffected, apathetic nihilists were very good at complaining about things. In France, people of this age were called Génération Bof, or Generation Whatever.

Some of my favourite music, films and reading materials come from this generation’s complaints. They used these established vehicles, mostly run by the Baby Boomers, to make their complaints.

To what end? They let the world know they were angry before embracing ‘the establishment’ jobs and settling down with a couple of kids, marrying then divorcing, realising they were older and had a whole new generation about which to complain.

I’m sorry, was that an unfair, sweeping generalisation? How dare I.

In reality, I have no issue with Generation X. They are simply a group of people born during a vague period of time in the 20th century (no one ever seems to agree what the actual start and end birth years are for each generation). There are corporate ladder climbers, stay at home parents, criminals, artists, travelling gypsies, politicians, the full range of humanity.

But if we must talk in general terms about Generation Y, then can we at least acknowledge that there is a good side.

We are more radical than people think.

We don’t just do mischievous things in the spaces established by previous generations – we create the space, change the face of it or challenge its very existence. We make new rules.

We’ve shaped the realm of social media that continues to keep corporations, politicians and marketers on their toes. We hold them accountable for their claims. Surely that dispels the myth of a passive consumerist generation. We know what we want, we are resourceful, we research, we ask each other for advice.

We have embraced, for better or for worse, file sharing and the exchange of ideas and yet we are accused of having no sense of community.

My friends and I report the news to each other, providing links to several sources via social media and then engaging in discussion and critique. No one can tell us what to think.

We are made to feel selfish and spoiled because we dare to ask ourselves what it is we want and then proactively seek out the answer to that question. My friends are not lazy. My Facebook newsfeed is a constant stream of “Still at the office”, “Finished my first triathlon”, “Volunteering at the charity store tomorrow”, “Writing my thesis”, and “Completed the surf lifesaving course”.

It seems when you stop complaining and pointing the finger of blame at other groups of people, you start becoming a more valuable, productive member of society.

Huh.

Breaking up is hard… no actually, is getting easier to do

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PROOF: Singing to yourself in your underwear helps.

PROOF: Singing to yourself in your underwear helps.

Going through a break up can make it seem like all of your Facebook friends are married and producing offspring, while another one of your attempts at a ‘happily ever after’ has turned to dust.

However, the more of these break ups I endure, the better I get at figuring out the way through to the end without causing serious damage to others or myself.

I have learned not to set fire to anything, to ask politely for any of my borrowed stuff back, and to accept my role in the relationship’s demise.

I have realised that I need to acknowledge that the relationship is over and that makes me sad. If I don’t make my peace with this, I become very good at pretending I’m happy and running straight into another man’s arms/bedroom. Cut to three years later and I’ll be going through another break up. Contrary to what I claim in job applications, it seems I am not a fast learner.

That leads me onto the importance of not having sex with any of your friends. Complicated, very complicated, and really just not worth it. Not fun in the end, I guarantee you. Ignore every stupid romantic comedy movie ever made about the love of one’s life having been under one’s nose the whole time. People are generally not stupid and realise pretty early on if they want to hook up with a new ‘friend’.

Look, I love When Harry Met Sally as much as the next person, but in reality, the movie’s ending translates to this:

Harry was so horny one New Year’s Eve that he decided to go apologise to his friend, the last person he slept with who still liked him afterwards. Sally was on a bad date and feeling pretty depressed so they decided to get married to ensure they’d at least have sex and company. Sally was then able to concentrate on her career as a journalist and Harry went back to consulting with politicians (or whatever it was he did).

I may even understand now how to stay friends with an ex. So long as I never see him with a new girlfriend. That’s realistic, right?

The most important thing to remember is to reach out to friends and family for chats, alcohol, flowers, puppies, chocolate, and hugs.

They will give you validation that you still ‘got it’ when you roll up in your car blaring Beyoncé and emerge wearing tight pants. Just don’t bang them. Seriously, no banging.

And this is that Beyoncé song you need to listen to. It actually includes the line, “Sucks to be you right now.” Better than Neil Sedaka.

I’m coming out of the closet… with a jar of Nutella

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Sunday night dinner.

Sunday night dinner.

Blogging is great, isn’t it. There’s such a feeling of safe, almost anonymity.

In the spirit of this feeling of security, and while I’m also under a blanket on my couch on a chilly Sunday evening, I am going to confess a few things to you. They are the obsessive habits I have cultivated throughout my life that I have been too ashamed to admit until now.

  1. I own all 10 seasons of Friends on DVD and have watched them repeatedly for the past nine years.
  2. Sometimes when I’m alone at night, I dine on spoonfuls of Nutella. As far as I know, it’s not not a healthy meal replacement.
  3. I perform concerts in my living room when home alone. If I don’t look in the mirror, I can convince myself that I am Eddie Vedder.
  4. When I’m reading a book and the author describes a strange sound that an animal is making, I start trying to quietly make that sound.
  5. I talk to my dog so much that I start truly believing she understands me and is responding with a series of head tilts, barks and leaving the room.
  6. I also speak encouragingly to food as I am cooking dinner. “Ok, tomato, so what I’m going to do is just turn you like this and make a quick incision right here. See, that doesn’t hurt too much, right? You look fabulous, by the way.”
  7. I make meaningless lists. Like titles of books I will write some day that I currently have no story for, female celebrities I would befriend if I were a famous film director, and lists of obsessive habits about which I can blog.
  8. Of course, I also spend a lot of time with my laptop and can spend up to an hour staring blankly at my Facebook profile, trying to figure out how to make it more interesting.
  9. I google celebrities I find attractive to find out if they are currently single and potentially open to dating me.
  10. My favourite thing to do is make dramatic resolutions to learn a language or take a course. Thanks to the Internet, I have quite a collection of phrase books in various languages and a folder of university courses on pretty much every subject imaginable. I only follow through on about one per cent of these ‘commitments’.

I welcome you to come out of the closet and share your so-called weird habits. It’s kinda like getting drunk together.