"" bshawise: Mates

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


I continue to ponder this community thing. This morning I'm pondering mates. I've come to believe over my short life that we all need mates. You're thinking, "Quit saying mates, what do you mean by mates?"

Mate [meyt]
1. husband or wife; spouse.
2. one member of a pair of mated animals.
3. one of a pair: I can't find the mate to this glove.
4. a counterpart.
5. an associate; fellow worker; comrade; partner (often used in combination): classmate; roommate.
6. friend; buddy; pal (often used as an informal term of address): Let me give you a hand with that, mate.
7. Nautical.

I'm referring to 4/5/6 on this list but my definition is slightly different. In my dictionary there's a difference between friend and mate.

Mate [meyt]
1. a comrade; counterpart; brother whose face you can throw a shoe at and still be alright. A buddy you can angrily disagree with one minute and hug it out the next.

Getting to this level of mate takes time. One of my best good mates was a roommate in college. We had some doozie fights. We were both born with large amounts of stubborn brain cells. We could go toe to toe one minute and then be laughing about something the next. We weren't bi-polar. We were mates. I'm no relationship scientist but I honestly think that physical violence unleashed on another's face, whether that be a shoe or a milk-jug boxing glove (both stories for another day) somehow takes friendships to the next level. You either become enemies or mates. Various physical and verbal bouts are what took Tyler and I to the next level I think. (is this getting too gay?)

I'm not saying go around punching your friends in attempt to mine new mates. But I will say that we all need one or two people who are on the next level of friendship. And I think it's important that they be in our lives now. We need counterparts who can call us out, verbally punch us and we'll still be OK. It's that whole iron sharpening iron thing. Sure the sharpening hurts, but the transformation into super-pointy, iron-swords is pretty rad. That's when you upgrade to #7. Nautical.


Steve Fuller said...

I can't wait to have our friendship grow to the level where I can punch you in the face.


tyler said...

you had me at hello.

10 Gallon Bucket said...

I threw a shoe at my roommate square in the face this morning.

He's moving out tomorrow.

bshawise said...

joe, your roommate clearly never had level 7 nauticalness in his system. bon voyage, loser.