I'M A TERRIBLE FRIEND - AN OPEN APOLOGY

     I would like to start by immediately apologizing to anyone and everyone who has ever called me a friend.  I am incredibly sorry that I am a terrible friend.  I hope you can find it in your collective hearts to forgive me.  Even if you do, remember, I will still be an awful friend.  Bear that in mind as we go forward.

Now that the heartfelt apology is out of the way, I’d like to give a rundown of all the things that I do that make me a terrible friend.  I’ll try to avoid giving excuses but since this is the Internet... it’s probably the Nazis’ fault or because I’m a Nazi or something like that...  With Godwin’s law fully satisfied, lets get things started.

Thanks a lot, Mike.

Thanks a lot, Mike.

I Will Miss Your Birthday 
      I think that it is particularly telling that in this modern era I still miss every birthday for everyone I know.  From friends to family members to my own wife, I do not believe I have ever wished anyone in my life a happy birthday on their actual birthday.  It is important to remember that I am constantly interacting with Facebook and other modern technologies that go out of their way to inform me that it is your birthday. Despite all of this, I will either send you a birthday message late or not at all.  Please understand, this is not because I don’t like you.  It is because I am a terrible friend (or person) who can’t be bothered to say Happy Birthday to you, no matter how important you are to my life.  For this alone, I should probably be put on some sort of friend blacklist.  Of course, when and/or if I wish you a happy birthday, I will give a really lame excuse.  The are, beyond a shadow of a doubt, total bullshit and should be ignored. They include:

1. Work has been really busy lately.
2. I haven’t been checking facebook lately.
3. I thought it was next month.
4. I haven’t been getting a lot of sleep lately.
5. My fingers are all broken.
6. I’m being held captive by a lunatic in a Nixon mask.
7. I’m a terrible friend.

  The list goes on and on and they are all categorically horse crap.  You should simply ignore these and assume that I am a bad person.  You should especially be wary of the last excuse.  This is a meta excuse and is meant to disarm you.  Saying that I am a bad friend does not excuse my bad friend behavior.  In a strange way, that makes this entire article a meta-article and you should probably ignore the rest.

No, I didn't realize it was 3 months ago. Oops.

No, I didn't realize it was 3 months ago. Oops.

I Will Not Talk to You for Extended Periods of Time

      Again, it doesn’t matter how important you are in my life, I will go incredibly long periods without ever making contact with you.  I do this to everyone and would probably do it to my wife if I didn’t live with her.  I hope that you all understand that I still like you but I am also incredibly lazy.  As such, the infinitesimal amount of effort required to call or write to you vastly exceeds my commitment to our relationship.  We may have spent years of fun times and great experiences together and still actively enjoy the time we spend together but I have shows to watch and Internet to surf.  There is only so much time in the day and frankly communicating is tough work.  The only solace I can offer is the knowledge that I do this to my own sister as well.  Of course, nothing I can say here will excuse my actions and frankly I don’t want to anyway.  I like sitting on my lazy ass and basically ignoring anyone and everyone of any importance to me.  It’s part of my charm...  You should consider yourself lucky that I haven’t forgotten your name.

A cell phone stabbed my grandpa during the war.

A cell phone stabbed my grandpa during the war.

I Will Forget Your Name  

      Sorry.  I have probably forgotten your name.  When I see you on the street, I will greet you politely enough but I will then have to run home and search for your name on Facebook.  The good news is that I have a great memory for faces so I should be able to discover your face and then connect a name to the face.  Unfortunately, I will promptly forget your name and not remember it the next time I see you.  Right now, your probably saying to yourself “No way he’s forgotten my name! We attended school together for years!” or “He couldn’t have forgotten my name! I’m his cousin!”  All I can say is, wrong again.  As of right now, I don’t even remember my son’s name.  I know it starts with a J but I’m going to have to look it up to be clear.  If you don’t mind being awkwardly called you in sentences where a name would be more appropriate (or alternatively your name is you) then I am the friend for you.  If you are 99.999% of people who don’t enjoy that, wear a name tag or continuously mention your name in conversations with me.  I promise I won’t think it’s narcissistic.

I have no idea what a coffee slut is... probably not your name anyway.

I have no idea what a coffee slut is... probably not your name anyway.

I Will Pretend to Know What You Are Talking About

      No matter what topic you want to discuss with me, I will pretend to have a wealth of knowledge on the subject.  Moreover, I will always have an opinion regardless of my ignorance on the subject.  Furthermore, I will attempt to construct my opinions by altering the small bits of data that you have included in your half of the conversation.  Most horrifically, I will occasionally just make shit up to be able to contribute to the conversation.  I hope you weren’t actually relying on my information or planning to use it in conversations with other people.  If you were, I’m very sorry.  I want you to know that I don’t do this out of spite or bitterness for people who are well informed than me; I do this because I have an uncontrollable desire to be important to the conversation.  In fact, somewhere deep in the lizard part of my brain, I probably want to more important to the conversation than you.  I don’t know why I do this but it probably has something to do with sex or hunting or...

Chicks dig good conversationalists.

Chicks dig good conversationalists.

I Will Harass You into Doing Things You Don’t Want to Do

      I am probably fully aware of your distaste for whatever activity we are discussing but I will still try to needle you into doing it.  Again, I don’t do this because I dislike you.  I do this because I probably care about my own likes more.  I am not saying that I don’t care about your feelings, I do care.  I just seem to lack the ability to separate my own wants and desires for actual imperatives.  Somehow, I have come to believe that all of the things I want to do are wholly and completely necessary.  Sadly, you will probably go along with me for a little while.  You will do this because you are a much better friend than I am.  Where I would be a jerk and refuse, you will politely agree because you are actually a good person.  I must say that I am very sorry for this behavior but have absolutely no intention of stopping.  

Come on! It'll be fun!

Come on! It'll be fun!

I Will Try to Make Last Minute Plans with You
      It doesn’t matte how long I have been planning to do something with you; I will still contact you at the absolute last moment to actually establish the plans.  I will probably call you the night before or even the day of and tell you that we should get together.  If you say you are busy or otherwise engaged, I will probably say that it’s okay but I will be secretly upset at your lameness.  In fact, I may even playfully accuse you of being lame over the phone.  Sure, I could have called you days ahead of time so that you could clear your schedule but I didn’t.  In an insane way, I will try to make you feel better about not dropping everything to hang out with me.  I don’t know why I do this but I have probably done it to you a million times already.  As often as not, you will agree to the plans and regret it later.  After I have set the date and time with you, I will then attempt to shovel all of the decision making load off on you.  I will try to make you pick the food and the movie and everything else.  I try to disguise this as kindness but it will really be my spectacular laziness in action.  I know that I want to do something but I am not willing to expend the brain power to actually pick an activity.  Having said that, I will probably actively reject the activities you suggest.  This makes me truly a monumental ass but a monumental ass who is somehow your friend.  Tough luck...

      If any of the previous statements describe and interaction you’ve had with me, then you are most likely a victim of my terrible friendship and people skills.  Congratulations! You are probably my friend.  Unfortunately, I cannot offer you any recompense or aid.  I am a terrible friend and you will probably just need to continue dealing with that.  Sorry.  I am sure that there are more terrible friend behaviors that I have failed to mention.  If you think of one, feel free to contact me and share it with me.  I make no promises that I will do anything about my flaws but it might make you feel better.  Before I end this apology, I would like to apologize one more time.  I’m sorry, you...