Sunday, February 19, 2006

Crazy L

I met Crazy L ostensibly in jr. high. Her sister, who was a hipness queen, told a friend and I that crazy L was feeling a little overwhelmed. Crazy L was smart, pretty and always interesting, at least.

We shared tastes in music, books, arts, style and she always had good taste.

In high school our lives bumped off of each other like pinballs in friendship, with stories and occasionally hanging out, discovering that we shared a language of neuroses. Post high school, college, the length of our connaissance took root, and we became longer term friends, the ones who stick by regardless of bad behavior or harsh words. Throughout our 20's we shared poverty, roommate, male and general life problems and Crazy L started to show patterns of thinking and activity that defined, for me, who she really was.

Post college we both went through the struggling to get it together phase, each in our own ways. She bounced from job to job and boyfriend to boyfriend. I left the country.

In college though, or shortly before, I had a life change. We still were both as crazy a a couple of jackals, but while my self destructiveness tapered, hers ramped up.

Patterns in L's life were that she could not hold a job nor a relationship. I recall her breaking up with someone because she said she didn't like the way his chest hair grew. She seemed to always be mid-crisis, and usually it was of some emotional sort or another. She is married now but suffers the insanity of a stay-at-home mom.

She was the friend who was crazier than I even, and she was always the one that was the magnet for the hombres.

She tended toward drunken nights in bars, because Crazy L was a party in her mere presence. Did I mention she was gorgeous in a certain way that drove men insane? No matter how I ever tried to attract morons of the opposite sex in my 20's I was saddled not with an overweight body, complexion problems or some other unfortunate feature...I merely had this face that screamed "nice girl", no matter how much I wanted to do something really not nice. Every cell that made up Crazy L screamed "fun and crazy!". That made them dudes line up for a little L style insanity, if only just for one night.

So suffice it to say, L was the master of good times. Even if the good times were a little unhinged. Even if she was a little unhinged. That just made it a little more edgy, more desparate, nothing to lose, starting from zero.

But there is always a down side to friends like this. Crazy L is like a skier out of control going 100 miles per hour down a black diamond that they are unfamiliar with and not prepped to handle. If one knows that about her, it's easier to deal when she grabs hold and starts to drag you with her.

I heard once that love is truly a form of pity. I always wrestled with how much truth actually was there in that statement. I do know that female friends, no matter how nutso, are damn hard to come by. Females are almost impossible to befriend. I am a social klutz, and so one false move for me, one not well thought out comment, one less than sincere sounding compliment, one too sincere compliment, one omission of a birthday card--never mind an out and out affront--...girls are flippin impossible.

But L, her I stuck together. She abused me with her best shot more than once, and I am sure she would allege that I am faulty in my duties as well...

It's just that nowadays, she is still a mess. And my life has real problems in it. Not the manufactured kind. Not the kind that can be controlled. Her high drama and shady insinuations of slights against her, her martyrdom and black hole level of self absorption is exhausting to me. I have tried to do everything for her. It is never sufficient.

Then I feel vaguely guilty. Here's a friend in need, and what am I to her, above her problems? Or the other side of the card, why waste time on a crazy hag like her? Ironically, she always paints me as the crazy rebel (primarily because I am a Christian, and God knows this means we aren't human--don't all christian females wear flower print skirts and say "gosh!" and get married as young virgins to virile blond men?)

So Crazy L, post recovery, mid marital fisticuffs, 2 kids in tow and I sense on a spending bender to do J her husband coming over tommorrow. I haven't spoken to her in 6 or so months. I feel eons away from the friendship we had or the person I was that was friends with her. I don't live her way. The drama finds me and I try to minimize it so it doesn't give me ulcers and I can act normally. She generates drama, looks for ways in which she may have been slighted, holds very high expectations for others that she cannot herself keep to.

I am being hard on her. Like any friendship, one takes the good with the bad, she gave me a wedding shower, she was a bridesmaid. She has had her true trials, a miscarraige, a war weary husband who no longer recognizes when she cries wolf...It is nice that she is thinking to come see me.

Well she'll be here tommorrow.


Fitèna said...

I could hear myself there and realise how much I've changed! Most of my friends were Crazy Ls. Not in the self descrtuctive sens but in the sens that I played the nice girl's role and had to put up with their cheer nastiness. No one actually intended it to be like that but that's the way our relatinships worked. Nobody almost never called me, I did the calling and would even feel guilty for not calling often thinking up reasons why they ain't calling. We all had our problems but theirs seemed to be/ or they made them sound to be so bad I'd feel guilty for not doing enough...
"I heard once that love is truly a form of pity", I'' have to think over that...
She's lucky to have you... I hope she realises it...


suleyman said...

I know it all too well.

My Crazy L doesn't have any real friends. My Crazy L has the tendency to destroy relationships because he lacks empathy and believes the world is out to get him. My Crazy L is a manipulator, a compulsive liar, and a serial womanizer.

He has been given over to a reprobate mind. I don't foresee him changing his ways any time soon.


M said...

If you don't know her any more, you could always meet her again.

Sometimes, when you don't have the energy to help someone, you're not helping them by hurting yourself. It's not up to us to save people, it's up to us to lend a hand if they want to save themselves.