In particular, they're mostly on Facebook, which is unfortunate because I've been avoiding that particular pit of crazy. Thank goodness for Twitter friends (many of whom are also real-life friends, of course, even though we've scattered ourselves all over the globe) and for the fictional friendships I can enjoy and fret over.
So I've been thinking about another fictional friendship that was torn apart, not by evil intent like last week's Much Ado gents, but by (perhaps misapplied) good will. In It Shoulda Been You, we meet up with the gang after best friends Marty and Jenny have been estranged for a while.
It all went down like this: they grew up together, along with Jenny's younger sister, Rebecca. Rebecca and Marty even dated for a while, after Jenny went off to college and left them both behind. But eventually Marty discovered a secret that Rebecca asked him to keep, and Marty knew he couldn't trust himself not to tell Jenny, his best friend, if he kept in contact with her. So, to keep his promise to Rebecca, he dropped out of Jenny's life. Without another word. Without telling her why. And Jenny is understandably upset about this when the friends finally reunite onstage.
|Marty (Josh Grisetti) & Jenny (Lisa Howard) |
rehearsing the reunion song, "Who."
Which is delightful and ends in forgiveness.
It was (probably) not with ulterior motive that Rebecca asked Marty to be silent. It was (most likely) with the best of intentions that he agreed. And despite her harsh words at their meeting, Jenny was faithful in holding onto hope that their friendship might return someday. (She still has him on speed dial.)
As with Much Ado, it's a friendship that was nearly ruined by someone else's actions. Unlike real-life friends, fictional friends have the benefit of structured time--everything has to be wrapped up by curtain call. Of course, in real life, too, we're also running out of time, with the added twist that we don't know when our curtain call will be. I can say, without giving anyone away, that I know some folks who woke up with regret on February 19, 2015, for having not mended a rift with Chadwick before it was too late. And there's nothing that can be done about that now.
That's as close as I'm going to get to saying the obvious thing, but please do consider the obvious thing just in case. Here's the second-most-obvious thing: it's not good to be the one who steps in between people. Goodness knows life is messy and screwing up is human, but to cause intentional turmoil in others' relationships, even without ulterior motive, is to invite trouble into many lives. Deal gently with other people's hearts and minds and emotions. Tread carefully before you cause a crack. You don't know if there's enough time to mend it before the curtain call, and it would be pretty lousy to face the afterlife audience as the villain.
(I sadded everything up again, didn't I? I wasn't planning to go that way, but spontaneous sad seems to happen whenever my fingers meet a keyboard. Maybe this is who I am now.)