It seems cruel now that I come to write it down. I mean, I rely on Jules most of the time; I have done for a long time; and I know that I can take him for granted. We all do. I guess when he’s around he’s pretty welcome, and he sure knows how to get stuff done. I just worry sometimes that we … well, that we don’t really enjoy his company as much as we used to.
I suppose what made me start to wonder was when I realized that, sometimes, when you reckon that he’ll turn up as normal – and, you know, hang around, like he does – but then, he’s nowhere to be seen… well, it’s kind of fun. That’s a pretty bad thing to say about a real stand-up sorta guy, especially someone who basically never lets you down. I feel bad saying it; but it’s not just me! When he just doesn’t show up, people seem sort of excited. It’s not that he’s a downer or anything, I guess it’s just the novelty of, I dunno, having to do without his company, I reckon. People behave differently! And then he’s suddenly just there again, and everybody pretty much just goes back to the way they were before.
I’m not saying that I don’t want to be able to just call him up when I want. Just that sometimes, I think we could do with some more time apart. Damn, that sounds awful, doesn’t it? What a bad friend that makes me seem – it almost sounds like an abusive relationship! But it isn’t like that, I promise! It’s only that he seems to be always around, it can be hard to get some space, some quiet – you know?
And besides, I worry about him – what he’s up, sometimes; maybe I don’t really want to know….
(A test piece for ‘My Friend Jules’, part of Stories of Change)