"I think a lot about the acoustics of childhood friendships versus adult friendships, and how things sound as a kid – and the actual joy of play as a kid versus all the talk as an adult. Especially now, there's so much stillness in maintaining friendship. It's a matter of sitting somewhere and looking into these digital windows, since we can't go out and play."
A part of yourself is completely unexplored till you meet a particular person or go to a particular place.
The problem is that when it comes to friendship, we are ritual-deficient, nearly devoid of rites that force us together. Emily Langan, a Wheaton College professor of communication, argues that we need them. Friendship anniversaries. Regular road trips. Sunday-night phone calls, annual gatherings at the same rental house, whatever it takes. “We’re not in the habit of elevating the practices of friendship,” she says. “But they should be similar to what we do for other relationships.”
Were friendships always so fragile? I suspect not. But we now live in an era of radical individual freedoms. All of us may begin at the same starting line as young adults, but as soon as the gun goes off, we’re all running in different directions; there’s little synchrony to our lives. We have kids at different rates (or not at all); we pair off at different rates (or not at all); we move for love, for work, for opportunity and adventure and more affordable real estate and healthier lifestyles and better weather.