We walked the streets of Amsterdam without a plan, without a concern in the world. Some of us just wanted a good coffee or beer or muffin. Some wanted to see the city we had always heard of but never seen with our eyes, never walked on our own feet, never smelled the wafting of marijuana whilst you walked behind a smoker.
One pointed out the buildings that leaned unnervingly forward. Others stopped in markets or looked sadly at the line to a museum. We sat in cafes and lounge rooms and kitchens, but nothing really mattered because we were together.
I have friends strewn all over the world. Some I will never see again. Others I will randomly run into, and others have decided and agreed with me that we need to make sure we see each other often. And as I was walking away from my recent snow covered lodgings it dawned on me, I have conversational champions that make me so confident in who I am that I start conversations more fluidly when I have them by my side.
And although there are probably many more than I will mention here, I will mention at least three.
Luke summerell is a quieter, humbler, more sensible friend that when paired with me in my more rambunctious moments almost looks to be the opposite of me, as he is calm and honouring of speech and funny without being rude. But I realised in the mid 2000s that Luke was my safety blanket. When Luke would go to shows or parties with me I could be a louder ruder more extremely extroverted version of me because I knew I had someone in the room who would love me deeply no matter what stupid situation I would get into. I also had sweet cred whilst with Luke because people would sometimes be like “that guys crazy, but… He’s with Luke so he must be pretty cool” I shared a room with that guy for years and lived in a house with him longer. I love him and when paired with him in a social situation it’s the best.
John Poole is a man I have only spent six months of my life with and he is arguably crazier than me in some ways. But we realised early that John is incredible at starting conversations and I was great at the middle part. Which has been a fun skill to grow in, I still don’t like the first part of chats. And I regularly wish John is with. But. His creativity and love of people still makes me want to sing….. Funk songs.
And the main man that tipped me off to this train of thought is Mark Twyzold. A man very skilled in honour and intellect and hilarity. And one who, as shown by a two o’clock in the morning conversation recently, fits perfectly into the way I converse with others. Like a perfect “make them feel comfy and ask them questions” team. And not like good cop bad cop, more like we both have the same line of encouragement for people and we work well off each other.
I like how we have been made into teams.