Friday, November 30, 2012

The List

I got in touch with two pretty swell fellas this afternoon. One of them is a Utah State University Ambassador who shared his dating dealbreakers with me over CafĂ© Rio. The other is a business student in graduate school who explained to me the ethical dilemmas that he faces as a doctoral candidate in Mississippi. It’s been over six months since I’ve talked with either one of these guys, but for the hours that we chatted and laughed about memories past, it felt like we hadn’t missed a beat.

For full effect, download “I’ll Be There For You” by the Rembrandts, which was also the theme song for the TV show “Friends”, and play at maximum volume through- wait, what am I thinking? Everyone HATES that song! Especially the clapping part in every verse. You know what Rembrandts? NO! Because of you, there will be NO theme music in this blogpost! So there!

Shooting hoops alone in an abandoned gym tonight got me thinking about some pretty monumental things. And yes, I must admit the most deep and spiritually moving moments in my life have come while bouncing a ball on a wooden floor and living up to my nickname of Swamp Thing. Everybody has those places where they are truly enlightened. Mine just happens to be in a stinky gym. Don’t hate.

As I dripped and drove, I deliberated over the concept of interpersonal relationships. There are of course different levels of relationships that we have with people in our lives, that much is obvious. There are those who we don’t know, there are those who we count as casual acquaintances, there are those who we list as friends, and then there are those who we would take a bullet for without blinking; people who mean more to us than the shirts on our backs or the food in our bellies. They are the people who we classify in the same realm as family, maybe even more than family. Heck, these are the people that we don’t awkwardly avoid at eggnog-spiked Christmas parties. These are the people who we L-word their stinking guts.

It was at this point in between bricked shots where I came up with what I shall call…

Wait for it…

The list.

Cue deep-throated bass belting out the words, Bum, bum, bum in a descending tone.

Everybody has a list. You, me, your sister’s best friend’s second cousin’s ugly stepchild, everybody! We all have a list. Whether it’s unprocessed or hand-written, every one of us has a list subconsciously brewing in our noggins of who we think we will still be friends with 50 years from tonight. The people who have been through our ups, been through our downs, and vice versa. These are the people who we can see being with on our front-porches when grandkids are changing our diapers. They are the Marshall and Lily’s to our Ted Mosby’s.

And so, tonight I made my list, my own list. A list of excellent souls who I think are among my top priorities. I shall now transcribe to you the words from the personal journal of Mr. Brock Thomas Bybee, Volume VI, 11/29/12:

“I started thinking about the people in my life that matter the most and who I can still see myself holding a relationship with in 10, 20 years. These are the names I could come up with:”

And from there I wrote down 30 names. 30 people who have a seat at my table until we all kick the bucket, 30 people who I would happily cut off my left arm for, 30 people who mean more to me than chocolate means to a pregnant mother of twins. 27 guys and 3 girls, every single one of them a saint in my book. The two chaps I dined and laughed with, yeah, they’re on the list. They have a place at my bar.

Now dear reader, you may be asking yourself ‘I wonder if I’m on this list of his, did I make the cut? Am I one of those 30?’ That’s not really that important now is it? Do I, a random blogger really mean that much to you in the long run? Instead, the question I pose to you, and this is by far a much more significant inquiry that you need to think real long and hard about for the next ten minutes, or at least until you have a life-altering moment on your own basketball court, but my question to you is this:

Who’s on your list?

What do you think?


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