YOUR TYPICAL SKOOLFRIEND TYPES:
PIE-CHARTS AT THE READY, YEAH?
Everyone has that one friend, that one charming friend who has everyone wrapped around their finger. They look so sad; nobody can say ‘no’ if they want something. You know how in movies, a hypnotist swings a watch in front of someone and suddenly they do everything you ask? That is what their eyes are like.
They are masterfully skilled in the manipulation of others, and have the ability to make their eyes well up with tears at any opportunity, or to smile sadly at someone. This friend could convince the whole school staff that their parents just went off on a plane to Barbados, and dognapped the Queen’s corgis on the way …
That is the kind of power they possess. If a hypnotist wants something, they usually get it.
Each calculated step they take can either be a positive thing for you, or it could be a big problem. Unless you are a very cold person, you will end up giving them whatever, food money or otherwise, as long as they look at you with puppy-dog eyes. Not good, especially if they end up not to be as much of a friend as you thought they were. They can end up completely ruining your reputation if they turn on you later on. So you have to choose carefully who your friends are. Like… a dating sim? No? I guess not.
On the other hand, it could prove a large advantage to have a friend like that to call on. Under their influence, a strict teacher could become more lenient if they find you misbehaving. You could get invited to sheep-penguin parties when otherwise you might’ve been left off the invitation list. And since everyone likes your friend, they’re more likely to like you as well if you’re under the friendship umbrella of a hypnotist.
But don’t only be friends with them for that, otherwise you would be using them. These types of friends can be adventurous and fun, and they’ll definitely be great to hang out with if you can see past their hypnotic talents. You’ll undoubtedly feel the urge to protect them from any sheep penguins willing to use them for their popularity. Remember, don’t judge a hypnotist by its watch; they could actually be innocent and shy under all that mesmeric power.
Either way, friends should be cherished, not used!
In every group of friends, there will be the shy one who doesn’t talk, and is a great listener instead. Sadly this person is not a great listener. Don’t worry though, this isn’t a bad thing. Everyone has that part of them which really just needs to let out all their stress, and often I’m the major culprit when it comes to chattering on all the time!
Sir/Lady Talk-a-lot will continuously chatter like a robot with no off switch. They will talk non-stop and if you dare to butt in, you’ll get an indignant sniff, followed by a glare, before the person continues on with their unflagging speech. If what they’re saying is interesting, you may find yourself invested in their story. But the majority of the time they only talk about themselves and their own problems. Sound familiar?
Either that or you’ll find yourself sitting there and feeling stupid and inadequate as they complain about the fact that they were only 1 mark off full score in the maths test, or the fact that they didn’t get an A** on their essay, merely an A*.
Usually, they have no idea that they’re making you feel bad. If they let you get a word in edgeways, maybe you could inform them of that… Good luck with that.
They have brilliant timing too. They often turn up at the exact moment while you’re trying to study for a test, or have a little peace from your siblings. They’re great to hang out with if you’re at a loose end. But sometimes there are times when the chatter is all too much, and you just want peace and quiet.
They might call you at the least opportune time, or keep talking at you while you’re desperately trying to text your parents to tell them you’re going to be home just a little later than usual – for instance, you’re going into town to buy choccies or snax after school. (And of course Talk-a-lot will then insist on tagging along on your expedition, yakking all the way …)
This friend will begin to talk about how this one person who sits next to them in Chemistry class accidentally blew up the lab while they used a Bunsen Burner, and how your friend’s bag – along with their textbooks and exercise books – got singed in the explosion. Innocent enough.
Problem is, when I try to multitask, things often turn out completely different from how I intended. So if this was me, then the text I was writing would turn out like this:
‘Going to the Bunsen Burner in town. Back a bit late. Buying some chemistry.’
This text will leave your parents bewildered, not to mention seriously worried about your mental health.
THE NOM NOM NOM
Okay, imagine you’re in the cafeteria. The sound of other students chatting with their friends is so overpowering, you can’t hear your own thoughts, let alone listen out for possible trouble. And it’s about to come right for you. Just as you’re digging into a delicious turkey sandwich, you look up to see two hungry eyes staring at you from the other side of the table.
Yep, you’re doomed.
This particular friend sit arounds and eats their own body weight in McDonalds burgers each day. Yet they never turn into more of a stick figure. Their insanely lucky genetics means that they can eat whatever catches their fancy. They aren’t particularly sporty, because they don’t see any need to work up a sweat, having no fat to burn off through exercise. They are some kind of magical metabolism superhero and they just shrug off food like it’s nothing.
That of course means that they are never full. They yearn for more food even after they’ve eaten you out of house and home (along with all of your friends). If you have so much as a crumb left on your plate, they will snatch it from you. Not that you would’ve eaten it anyway though, I suppose. It’s just a crumb so no harm done. Yes?
The really big problems happen when it’s more than just a crumb. When it’s your entire lunch, for instance.
Soon, you’ll have to bring extra food in your lunches for your hungry friend so that you don’t earn that little pout they do if you don’t feed them. It’s like having a pet under the table. Except they’re sitting right opposite, gazing at you with soulful eyes …
But that sets up for the dilemma of what to do when they’re ill, since you now have a ton of food to eat. It isn’t very good for you to start eating more at lunch, as you’ll either make a habit of it and blow up like a balloon, or be too full by the time supper rolls around.
So do you give the excess to your other friends, or throw it away? For the sake of not wasting food, you should hand out the snax to your other friends and let them share it between them. Despite how this may at first seem like an inconvenience, it can be a great opportunity to have a feast with your friends.
This happens sometimes to me on Fridays. At my school it’s also known as ‘fish-and-chips day’, and everyone seems to feel in a sharing mood because me and my friends like to celebrate the end of the week by getting a ton of chips and sharing it out between us.
So despite the occasional hiccup, sharing food is a great way to bond with your friends! Nom nom nom …
THE LONG-HAIRED MUSICIAN
This person isn’t really a musician. They may not even have long hair. But that’s what your friend wants to be. Though you can’t blame them – this person loves music so much, it’s only logical they’d want a career in it too. They live and breathe the latest tunes, their MP3 player is always playing and their eyes are always closed, inhaling the sweet, sweet music.
At least, except for the moments when they’re trying to force their particular music tastes onto you.
You’ll be sitting patiently, eating your lunch or doing some other absent-minded mundane task, when the musician strikes. No warning except for the click-clack of the fancy shoes they’re wearing (‘Well, [insertsingerhere] wore them in their newest music video so I just had to get them!’) as they approach, MP3 player in hand.
Within seconds, you will be at the whim of their fascination with music. Headphones will either be forced upon your head or stuffed into your ears, and music will be blasted so loud into your brain that you get dizzy. It really isn’t a fun experience at all. Every second of torment you spend only kills more of your brain cells.
Not that the music is bad. If you were given the time to ease into it peacefully, you might like it. But this friend presses their obsession onto you and you don’t realise it’s growing on you until you’re standing at a music concert in the pouring rain, your friend screaming in joy at the singers on the stage, and wondering to yourself: I don’t even like this band, how did I get here?
The only way to deal with this musical friend without hurting their feelings because you insulted their idols is to go along with it. Listen to whatever music they like in your spare time, because if you don’t, they’ll make you listen. Agree with them on the ‘best singer ever’ because if you don’t, they’ll keep going relentlessly until they make you agree. Go along with them to music concerts and live events because if you don’t, they’ll make you come along. I’m sensing a pattern here …
In the end, you have really no choice in the matter. It’s too late once you’re friends with them, and you probably won’t make it out of this without having bought several CDs and band merchandising. But if you smile and nod, you could potentially make it out without (too much) pain.
Everyone’s heard of the romantically idealised ‘soulmate’. The other half to your heart, the one you are meant to be with forevermore. ‘Soulmates’ are usually couples who are so insecure about their relationship that they try to convince both themselves and their partner that they would not be whole without one another, which is absolute bogus.
But soulmates are not necessarily romantic. You can find people you click with, people which make you wonder if you’re adopted and secretly their twin, that’s how strong the bond is. Buddies for life, they say. This is the person who basically lives at your house and takes up your couch every weekend, who is your parent’s favourite – ‘Why can’t you be more like dear [insertsoulmatesnamehere]?’ – and who your dog smothers with affection whenever they take them out for a walk.
The soulmate knows all your secrets. Theirs is the shoulder you cry on when things go wrong, and they always have your back, even when you don’t realise that you need it. You relate to one another on such a deep level that it seems you were made to be the best of friends.
Plus, they can always make you laugh. What’s not to love?
At the end of the day, you may never find this person. They might not even exist outside of movies and TV for most of us. But they do exist for some lucky ones, and you often need a best friend like this – a bestie you can really trust.
Depending on your interests, this person might be the avid admirer at all your football matches, always cheering you on at every victory and failure to a point where you are highly motivated and happy. Or they could be the one who helps you pick out an outfit for your first date. Whatever it is, they are always there for you, and you might not even notice it.
In an ideal world, this friend would make you constantly happy and laughing. But this is not an ideal world. You might not realise they’re such a good friend until it’s too late and you’ve had some big argument with them and parted company. Friends like this come and go – you need to be careful, and keep the really good ones close. This is a person you want to have as a friend for the rest of your life, potentially.
And of course, this is the person who picks you up when you fall down – after having a good laugh at your expense, of course. What kind of best friend would they be otherwise?
CHAPTER FOUR: Coming Soon …