Friendship is as unpredictable and nebulous as anything in life.
Sometimes people look great “on paper” – they share your views or your tastes or your interests – but in person there is absolutely no connection. Someone will say, “You and my cousin should hang out. He loves hiking and the outdoors just like you do.” But it turns out that their cousin likes jet skis and bass fishing, and thinks the desert is “where they should put all the pig farms.”
Sometimes you meet someone with whom you connect from the first moment you are in the room with them. Dan Marsh was such as friend when my newspaper’s publisher introduced him to me on my 50th birthday. Dan was our new editor, and I somehow knew at that moment that I was going to enjoy working with him, and that we were going to have a lot of productive discussions, about everything.
And our friendship certainly isn’t based on narcissism or self-congratulation. Dan and I will challenge each others’ assertions unhesitantly. In fact, I don’t think you can base a friendship on sycophancy.
I’m always glad when I see his name on a text message or an email, or when he rings me up. Dan left our newspaper last year to become the editor at the Magnolia, Arkansas paper, and in the last eight months Dan has cultivated a relationship with a lovely young lady named Christa. The two of them got married yesterday. I was planning to attend as a guest, but when their original photographer got sick and backed out, I stepped up and shot the whole thing for them, which was my honor, and which was mountains of fun.
Congratulations to my friend Dan and my new friend Christa.