Friday, September 28, 2018

Making friends

I'm pretty sure I can make friends with all my co-workers, given enough time. Sometimes I like to wait until just before they leave the library to go on to other work. Then, finally friends with them at long last, I like to rail against the injustice of it all as they are torn away from me. Sometimes I make friends with a co-worker in the first few seconds, and sometimes a couple of years go by where I merely grunt at someone only to suddenly realize "Oh my god! It's been years now. I guess I should make friends with them." So I start directing witty comments their way, which usually just confuses them. Then I inquire about their interests.

"I hear you really like cows." I say.

And then they talk for 15 minutes about cows. That's okay. In a work environment context I am quite interested in cows too. Plus I now have one more thing to read about on the Internet when work really slows down in the evening. Did you know that eating seaweed makes cows burp less?

The student workers only stick around for a year or two so I don't bother to learn their names or anything else about them for awhile. But eventually I feel churlish for such behavior. With a recent new student I decided to abandon my usual, not entirely friendly approach. Instead, spontaneously, in the breakroom, I suddenly warmly shared the information with him about our paper towels. Our paper towels, I told him, are our only perk here. Use the paper towels freely. It's all we've got in terms of perks.

This might have confused him because sometimes 11th graders don't know how little the outside world might have to offer them.

But the next day this very nice young man smiled really nicely at me. 

I liked him very much!

But then later I saw him smile at another co-worker. 

Oh, so that's how it is then.

Well, I'll learn his name when I get around to it.

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