FRIENDS OR FOES
Friendship is like an automobile that needs a constant attention. A lot of effort is required to keep it going. It drains energy, eats up time and creates a steam of unnecessary hassles. Maintenance of friendly relations is not easy. It is hard row to hoe. It beefs, it bites, it belly aches. At times it is more trouble than it is worth one's while. Friendship is that one has to give (sacrifice) more than he gets in return. Most of the times one finds himself guessing ones own performance, his creativity blocked, individuality downsized and clarity of mind hampered, somewhat by lingering discomfort of having friendship. Living alone in a desert island away from friends would be paradise but then the rub with these friends is that in our life at some point or the other we really do swim or sink together.Friends that are something like 'road dogs' meet us (in our life time) during our day to day goings. As they are the people whom we mostly hobnob with, they supposedly form our major acquaintances. The relationship is ephemeral and largely time bound. The relationship works on the principle of 'weathercock' and is made up of as many phases as the moon. With a distinctive commercial tinge, the relationship is largely aimed at raking in tangibles as well as intangibles. In the company of the adversaries, friend A is the topic of discussion. He is denigrated and torn to pieces. His friend B, present in the meeting, does not defend his companion, instead sneaks upon him quietly. He runs with the pack and nods his assent. To ones face they are probably the biggest fans of each other but given the chance, like an undercover assassin, they are out to get each other. They say the wrong thing at the wring time to the wrong person and join hands with them to concoct plans for the downfall/let down of each other. Friends that are something like 'Natural fits' are neither hot nor cold. They are neither one thing nor the other. Believing in the policy of 'live and let live' and 'never get involved in', these fence sitters leave things as they are. They keep in the middle of the road and sit out and sit on the sidelines. The friendship of this type works on the principle of 'avoidng Scylla and Charybdis' and keeping the golden mean. With a distinctive neutrality tinge, the relationship is largely aimed at ducking the issues and preserving balance without getting harmed in the process. These people live together, elbow to elbow, for extended periods of time with minimum conflicts among themselves. Parties involved use their fine Italian hand and hide their hands quite clearly. In the company of the other side, friend A is the topic of discussion. The latter is denigrated and torn to pieces. His friend B participating in the discussion is indifferent. He shies away from making any comments. He abstains and simply keeps quiet. Friends that are something like 'three musketeers' are minsicule group of well wishers and friends that sticketh closer than a brother. They are the supporters, they are the defenders. Like Achelles and Patroclus, David and Jonathan, and Hercules and Iolaus they have great chemistry for each other. They are the constant friends, they are the staunch friends. They are the fast friends and so to say friend-in-need-is-the-friend-indeed. In the company of others, friend A is the topic discussion. The latter is the topic of discussion. He is denigrated and nitpicked. The friend B participating in the discussions is the last person to hear this trash. He is with his hackles up. He fights up till end and puts up a brave front to speak for his friend and puts the best colour on him. In the present day modern and civilised world friends of this type are scarce as hen's teeth.