This article first appeared in the April 27, 1988 edition of the Ojai Valley News. It is reprinted here with their permission.
True friends trust each other enough to share
Special to the News
Friends have always been an important part of my life; you can’t have too many. You share everything, when you are down, they are there, when you are up, they forget that you were ever down. Who do you call at 3 in the morning when you are having a bad night? Your friend, of course. Who else would come running across town at that time of night? Your friend, of course.
A friend is one who might not agree with a decision you have made, but will back you to the end for having made it. They may tell you what they would have decided, but then that only gives you another option to consider. The trust of a friend is without question, you trust them with your car, keys to your house and they even let you borrow their wife.
A friend will set up all night pasting flower petals on a headdress that they may feel is the stupidest thing they have ever done, but they won’t complain, they might question you doing it again next year, but they won’t complain. They may even buy you a telephone message machine, even when they know you hate machines, and then don’t bother calling to leave a message.
A friend is someone who invites you on a trip with them, and then makes sure you have a good time, even if they aren’t then able to do the things they wanted to do. A friend will also work hard for you, in business and in pleasure no matter how bad they feel. A friend will hug you in front of all his Rotary buddies and not worry about what they think.
A friend will even order tickets to a play you are in, a month before opening night and when you are terrible, they don’t mention it. They send you a card in the mail for no reason, just for fun. A friend is always interested in what you have to say. A friend doesn’t ask your feelings on the roundabout, they know you’ll tell your opinion when you have one.
A friend is one that wont’ let you quit their organization even if you feel you’re not doing a good job for them, they love you just the same. A friend flies you to Lake Havasu, just to talk. Friends are also forgiving, they have to be, none of us are perfect, we all make mistakes and use poor judgement at times, but you don’t worry about your friends, the do forgive.
A friend will help you decorate all night for Christmas and stand back while you take all the credit for the joy it gives to so many. A friend is a sharing partner, you share everything no matter how personal it may be, they understand. A friend is one who wants you to gain weight, so they take you out to dinner and fatten you up, even though you like being skinny. They don’t jump you for not doing something you promised, they wait until you’re ready to do it, knowing you will get it done, someday.
A friend will have coffee with you each morning and wish you a good day when they leave. A friend will not be concerned if you choose to sit with someone else at a luncheon, they know that next time, you’ll sit with them. A true friend is a mother and father that loves you so much they will do anything for you, not questioning why you don’t know how to run the washing machine, but instead pick up your laundry and do it for you.
David Mason is the owner of the Village Florist in the Arcade, an Ojai native and the 1986 Ojai Valley Citizen of the Year.