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April 30, 2012 | by  | in Opinion |
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Mulled Whine With H.G. Beattie

BE YOUR OWN SOCIAL EXORCIST: LOSING FRIENDS AND ALIENATING PEOPLE FOR THE LIKEABLE AND TOLERANT.

Or, let’s hang out sometime so I can talk about myself while doing a crossword.

Losing friends and alienating people is a two-step process that should be addressed as such. To hark back to sixth form economics (my intellectual peak), you need to spend time and money cultivating the demise of relationships in the short term in order to save them in the long term. You probably have some friends from whom ‘drifting apart’ would be a godsend. I don’t, but I did. So listen.

It is a bummer that you can’t just break up with friends. You realise you’re just not on the platonic love train, so you sit them down and tell them that “look, it’s not you, it’s me” (while thinking to yourself, “It’s hardly me, I’m awesome.”) I have alienated a number of people in my time. Probably more than you have. It’s overachieving, however you look at it. If you think this applies to you, (a) your arrogance astounds me and (b) you can’t take it up with me because you don’t want to admit that you have deigned to read this. On a side note, (c), you ‘making a stand’ and not coming to my 21st means more of a bar tab for the five people who do show.

After all, some people attract other people. They’re enjoyable to be around and listen attentively to what I have to say. These people are human shields onto whom the universe invites me to deflect undesirables.

It follows that staying alienated requires agility and cunning. What will you choose – lax personal hygiene habits? General ignorance? Toryism? (These are mine. I’d appreciate you getting your own. If there are too many Tories around we’ll have to start all socialising together. Fuck that for a joke.)

A friend with whom I frequently spend time but who wants no acknowledgment to that effect because of my ‘mediocre looks’ (his words) told me the other day that he had heard on the radio that every negative thought should be counteracted by three positive ones. Given that I consider myself woefully unqualified as a therapist, I advise the proverbial grain of salt in deciding
(as I did) that INSTEAD, for every new friend I made, three would have to go. This  combination of realism and bogus science  will see me through. And if it doesn’t, my penchant for the Fray will do the trick.

This is entirely fabricated. I like everyone. And I have a completely sound reason for the winter of ’06 Fray phase.

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