Saturday, April 14, 2012

You Gotta Have Friends!

Not long ago I couldn’t tell you the difference between Face book and a recipe for Coq au vin. After signing up and struggling with it for awhile-I was rescued by my FRIEND SELINA KAYE. She steered me through the ins and outs of our generation's HOTTEST Social Networking TOOL and sent me on my way.

That was then. This is NOW! These days I just put the forecast on my FACE BOOK page. That’s about it. Occasionally I’ll post info about my latest outside project or SHARE a funny or meaningful tidbit. My brother DAVE RANDALL is my FRIEND. He writes some really FUNNY stuff. When he does I like to share it with MY OTHER FRIENDS.

Sometimes I'll argue with my friend and CO-WORKER GINGER GEOFFERY about which is better..."Twitter" or "FaceBook" -probably a stupid argument that no one will ever win. The nearest I can figure out-Twitter is for people who are "pithy". Face Book accommodates people who are "wordy" and blogging is for people who need analysis but can't afford it.

BRIDGET BLYTHE, MY FRIEND and former morning show co-host, is a social networking queen. She can twitter, face book, text, read news copy and write the noon news cast all at the same time. So we started soliciting friends on the air in a little friendly competition, to see who could get the most. It was the NEVER ENDING CONTEST with no prizes and no declared winner.

As the weeks went by we acquired dozens, then hundreds and eventually THOUSANDS of “Friends”. It was great fun for a while. Some of our “friends” were fans-that was VERY cool. Some of our “friends” were (and still are) TOTAL STRANGERS. Some of our “friends” turned out to be stalkers. Yech. “Hey it’s All fun & games until somebody starts STALKING you.”

When Bridget moved on to a new job , I was left with several THOUSAND NEW “friends”. Fortunately most of my Face book friends are low maintenance. You don’t have to call them and ask about the family. You never have to hang out with them, buy them lunch or give them rides anywhere. In fact you really don’t even ever have to talk to them. All that seems very weird, especially since we are supposed to be friends.

As a kid, my friends were the other kids I played with on Rosemont Avenue-but ONLY until the streetlights went on. In High School my friends were the semi-cool (at least I thought we were) “theatre people” that shared countless hours rehearsing, performing-and oh yea…THOSE cast parties!!

Early on as a waiter at the Crouching Lion or cooking at Pat’s Hot Dog Stand-my friends were the cooks, kitchen workers, bartenders and other servers that we hung out drinking all night with, grabbing breakfast at 4am and saying good-bye to at sunrise.

College friends were the ones I shared my deepest darkest thoughts and most treasured dreams with. Drinking coffee ALL night and believing anything in life could be possible-if only I didn’t have to finish that paper for Sociology.

Back then-I knew most everything about my friends; EVERYTHING… where they lived, what they did for fun, what they were having for dinner that night and where they were going on vacation. You’d see them at church, at boy scout meetings , when you delivered their paper and when you went to the grocery with your Mom.

I still have some friends like that on Face Book. People I actually know and see around and catch up with from time to time. Those friends are like meat loaf-they are “COMFORT friends”. There are people I work with (although I’m scared to friend any of the bosses)-there are some people I used to work with and even people I knew back when I lived on Rosemont 50 years ago. Some of those kids are planning a reunion this Summer-wow-we’ll have a lot of catching up to do!!

I have a LOT of friends on Face book that I’d like to meet like BOB CONRAD. Bob is an PROFESSIONAL puppeteer & FULL time entertainer who lives in New Jersey. He’s 70 years old and has 14 kids. I envy Bob. When I grow up I want to be Just Like Him!!

I have friends I’d like to see more often like Magician MIKE SEEGE. I see him around sometimes, but that guy is BUSY doing magic almost every night of the week somewhere around Western New York. He may be the areas BUSIEST and BEST magician in the region. At least I think he is. I know I could learn some NEW tricks from him!

I’m proud to be friends with Maria Droz and Adam Kreutinger. They are TWO of the coolest young people I know. They seem to be motivated and hard working. They are talented, fun and I think they’re in love! They perform with puppets & magic, Adam makes some of the most unbelievable puppets ever and Maria can sing and dance-you may have seen some of their work if you saw Musicalfare Theatres “Avenue Q” a few weeks ago.

ANN EDWARDS is MY FACEBOOK friend-we co-hosted Western New York’s FIRST morning news show together-for FIVE years starting in 1989. Ann sells houses now-but she’s on face book everyday with wonderful quotes like -"Everyone has talent; what is rare is the courage to follow the talent to the dark places where it leads." ~~~ Author, Erica Jong

Now thanks to FaceBook, I have MORE friends than I ever dreamed possible. I’m thinking I need to be more thoughtful toward them. Afterall, isn‘t there a saying that goes-”in order to have a friend you need to be a friend”.? Or…

I could just follow George Washington’s line of thinking. “Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence.” I’ll have to think about that.