Truth Time: I can be somewhat flaky when it comes to relationships.
I’m that person you get fed up with for forgetting to call you back. I’m also the person who had every good intention of replying to your text message this afternoon, but forgot—again. And yeah, sometimes I’m that person who seems to fall off the face of the planet for a week at a time when I have other obligations that occupy my time.
On behalf of my fellow flakes, I’d like to apologize for our behavior. It’s not that we don’t care about you—it’s just that we’re different from you. This would all make a lot more sense if you would just take some time to sit down with me and consider a blank white sheet of paper. (Trust me)
When you see a sheet of blank paper, you think it’s pretty boring. You’re eager to write all over it, doodle in the margins, and, if you have the time, fold it into an origami duck—just to see if you can.
I, on the other hand, see a white sheet of paper and stare at it for a good five minutes. It may be kind of boring—but look how white it is! The minute I put a marking on it, its innate whiteness will be ruined forever! Fold it? Are you crazy? You can’t unfold a fold!
Sometimes I find myself thinking like this when it comes to relationships. When I finally realize that staring at the whiteness of paper (or trying to nurture a friendship without communication) is something that crazy people do, I set out to create my masterpiece—but not without being very, very careful. There’s no room for mistakes in a masterpiece, right? Then, inevitably (because of a silly little thing called human nature), I end up messing up something along the way. And I’d sooner wait for a new blank sheet of paper (or another friendship) to appear than deal with the ugly smudge mark that trying to erase my mistake would surely leave.
What you call being flaky, us flakes often think of as trying to preserve as much of the pristine whiteness that still remains on the paper. Sure, there may be some cool drawings already on the paper, but isn’t it better for the paper to be empty (boring as that may seem) than to be filled with smudges or scratched out mistakes?
The truth that people like me don’t often take enough time to consider, is that no man can create a perfect masterpiece, but the talented artist knows how to weave even his most embarrassing smudges into his final work.
That’s an intimidating venture for people like me—which is why we are particularly thankful that we have people like you in our lives. You pull us out of our flakiness, and aren’t afraid to tell us we’re crazy for staring at blank white sheets of paper. So please, on behalf of flakes everywhere, don’t give up on us.
Article first published as A Letter of Apology (from the Flaky Friend) on Technorati.