I don’t have a lot of friends. As an addendum, I don’t have a lot of male friends. As such, ever since the fifth grade, all of my birthdays have been spent with my two best friends. I was never big into throwing parties for myself, so my birthday celebration would be a sleepover where the three of would play videogames until my mom yelled at me to turn the TV off. We would then proceed to stay up and talk about girls and/or life until my parents fell asleep, then we’d turn on the videogames again. All in all, it was basically a videogame all-nighter.
I can’t tell you how many fond memories we have from those nights. To this day we have nicknames that we refer to each other by from those ridiculous games, and we reminisce about the times we spent together doing nearly nothing at all. Honestly, I thought that’s how it was for most people. It’s really only later when I left college that I realized most people don’t keep their childhood friends.
Between the three of us, our friendship can drink. We’ve known each other for over 20 years and when we realized that, it was a sobering thought. We’ve experienced so much of our lives together, especially through hard times. I’ve always believed that hardship binds people together, and I think in part that was the case with us. After we left high school, we obviously didn’t get to spend our birthdays with each other, but we always met up during our time back. Even when we were apart, we’d still spend the time to play videogames online, it was our old touchstone to years past.
About a year ago, all three of us finally lived in the same place, at the same time, since high school. I remain close to the guys, but we actually don’t get together as often as you’d imagine, and that’s okay. When we do meet, it feels as if we just pick up where we left off, as it should when you’re 20 years into a friendship. We always game and talk on Skype and I think in a way that takes us back to simpler times.
It’s 4am, and I’m just getting this piece done. I could go on and on about our friendship, but all I can say is that they are the brothers that I chose. I’ve been blessed with two friends have been with me through thick and thin, and probably beyond. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that one day we’re going to be old and gray, and probably still playing videogames. In fact, we may or may not have already planned ways we’re going to kick our kids’ asses doing so. It’s a group effort, they have to learn how to cooperate and shit-talk, it’s a time honored family tradition after all.
Here’s to another year spent in our glorious company, we ridiculous men.