If on a Summer’s Day a Sanguine…

1

January 8, 2013 by lucieromarin

…has afternoon tea with a melancholic of the previous post (i.e me), the conversation about making friends as one ages might go something like this:

Me: Sigh.

Sanguine: What’s up?

Me: I’ve been thinking about how it’s so much more difficult to make new friends as you get older.

San: No, it isn’t. I don’t think it is.

Me: Oh?

San: Well, I’ve never had any trouble making friends. I have heaps of friends. What makes you think it’s hard to make new friends?

Me: Well – I guess people are in their groups, you know…and –

San: Oh, I don’t have any trouble with groups. I just talk to people. You should get out more. Why don’t you talk to more people?

Me: Well, sometimes it’s hard to-

San: No it isn’t. You worry too much. I don’t have time to worry. I have enough problems as it is without worrying about friends. You wouldn’t believe what I’ve been going through at work. It’s a nightmare. It’s a total nightmare. You’ve never experienced anything like it.

Sanguine 2: Hi, guys!

Me/San 1: Hi!

San 2: Sorry I’m late. You wouldn’t believe the traffic I had getting here. (Here follows a ten minute anecdote about the traffic.)

San 1: We were just talking about my work. It’s a nightmare.

San 2: Did you have a staff party in December? I went to a staff party. I showed them how a Catholic girl parties.

San 1: Me too!  I wore that red scarf you probably noticed me wearing at Mass last week and – oh – did I tell you about where I got these shoes?

San 2: Yeah, I saw your Facebook post. Did you see my photos from my visit to the Smiths? I spent three days there. It was awesome! I’m totally going back as soon as I can – I’m just waiting till the party season is over. I don’t want to miss the Jackson’s party! Did you go last year? I went last year –

San 1 (to me): See – it’s easy to make friends. I have 169 friends just on Facebook. It’s great!

Me: Have you met them all?

San 1: Not all of them, but I guarantee you they all know me. (grin) No one reads Sanguine One’s page without getting to know her – ho ho – no way! Everyone knows what I’m made of. So I’m not worried about making new friends. God will send me friends.

San 2 (to you?): Does making friends worry you? That’s so weird. I don’t think you can worry about things like that. I think you should just enjoy life. You need to get out more.

Me: But I guess that means someone has to invite me to something…I don’t know – once people get married –

San 2: Oh, married people love me. Did I tell you I went to the Jones’ the other day? Oh my gosh, the baby is so cute. We get on like anything. The baby loves me.

Me (to San 1): What are you doing?

San 1: Just taking a picture of the cake.

Me: Now what are you doing?

San 1: Just putting it on my Facebook page. There. Now everyone will know you had afternoon tea with me.

Me: Um. You came to my house.

San 1: Done. Great. (Looks up at me, smiling.) See? Having fun is easy!

***

Some people just don’t get that sometimes you need to be able to express a worry or a fear and not have it turned into a debate or an anecdote about them. At the same time, it must be admitted that these fictional sanguines do have points in their favour; they are, to some extent, making their own good fortune.

 

One thought on “If on a Summer’s Day a Sanguine…

  1. Mixolydian says:

    Oh, so many things to say!

    Firstly, yes, your last observation rings so true. Especially if you’re a melancholic, longing to express yourself, but struggling to do so. This becomes a strength for a melancholic on the receiving end of these expressions – if you’re switched on enough, you understand how important it is just to let someone say something without it leading to a debate or an instant solution. I wonder sometimes if it’s also a question of maturity, at least maturity in way of understanding people. A mature sanguine who cares enough about people will also learn to listen in this way.

    Secondly, I think that what a melancholic calls a friend is very different from what your fictional sanguine would describe as a friend. Yes, this fictional sanguine might be able to manifest her entire life and wear her heart on her sleeve (and post it on her Facebook wall) to anyone who happens to be around, but I wonder how many of these people will be around for her in twenty years’ time; how many will count her as one of their close circle of companions. Sometimes I think that young sanguines call people ‘friends’ if they’re non-repulsive people they happen to encounter and interact with on a semi-regular basis. I think that a melancholic, always one for precision, is more likely to distinguish these sort of relationships from true friendships by calling them pleasant acquaintances, or ‘people from my church/club/choir/work that I hang out with.’

    Finally, I’m not so sure that it’s true that it’s harder to make friends the older you get. I don’t want to question the observation of your melancholic friend, but I don’t know that it’s a universal rule and needs to be the case.

    There are two parties to every friendship and I can’t help think that the pool of potential friends seems to be getting older as the population ages. Furthermore, while a good many people may be old and embittered, the optimist in me thinks that there are also more people who’ve experienced a bit of life and have mellowed in the process, therefore making better friend material. And we tend to be less influenced by peer pressure and superficial requirements in making friends as we get older, which should help make new friendships a better quality than the ones forged while play-acting at parties; parties we never wanted to be at anyway.

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