The Masked Man

Tonight, I’m the masked man…sitting here in my big, comfortable, black leather poppa chair in my living room. The mask probably isn’t important. You probably wouldn’t recognize me anyway without my blue leotard and red cape, with the big L for Louie on the back. If you’re new to this blog, it’s about life for the Louie-Louie Generation…lads and ladies for whom that song has been a big part of the background of our lives. It’ not just about age. It’s actually mostly about ‘tude. Attitude. We’ve got it. We don’t age. We ferment instead. And sometimes the ferment causes trouble. We don’t mean for that to happen, but we don’t back away from it either.

 We don’t belong to the National Nasty Negative Association of America. But on the other hand, we figure if you can’t say something nice about somebody…go ahead. Get if off your chest. We believe that wearing out is better than rusting away. We stay in close touch with our friends, partially because they know too much about us. And maybe that’s why I’m the masked man. I’m hiding my face from Face Book. And not only am I not a Face Book friend, I am a Twitter quitter, and painful as it may sound, I’ve lopped off my link at linkedin.

 I’m not anti-social. I just think some people take the word “friend” kinda lightly. Or maybe I take it too seriously. But I really love my friends. I don’t have very many of them, and you know who you are. You have my email address and my phone number. You can get in touch with me any time you feel like it. You know I look forward to hearing from you. And you don’t even have to call before you drop in.

 But just because I met someone in the supermarket check out doesn’t mean that person is my friend, regardless of how the Face Book folks see it. We all have to perform the ”How are you,””Have a nice day.””Let’s get together sometime soon” supermarket check out act sometimes. It’s ok. But I don’t want to perform all the time. It’s like the commercials for a movie that says, Charleton Heston IS Moses. The actor gets lost in the act. I don’t want to get lost.

 Dick’s Details Quiz. All answers are in the current podcast. 

 1-    What has being a member of the Louie-Louie Generation got to do with eating the frosting before you eat the cake ?

2-    What happens in a man’s head when he knows that his woman colors her hair ?

3-    What do divorce attorneys need to tell their clients about women’s make up ?

 Dick’s Details. They take your mind off your mind.

 It’s very easy to go on stage now. Just by posting on Twitter, or Facebook, the whole world can catch our performance. Of course, the problem is that by doing that, we’re mainly feeding our egos, and I guess mine is big enough without putting on any more weight. But think about it. It’s mostly about…hey…look how many people are following me on Twitter…look how many Facebook friends I have…it’s just like giving a brilliant performance on a world wide stage. But when we over do it…and I always over do anything…we run the risk of tearing down the curtain that gives us a place to go and hide…we lose the ability to sneak off back stage and hide.

 I need a place to hide sometimes. I need some time to be just who I am instead of who I want people to think I am. There’s not a big difference, but there is a difference.

 It’s a good thing…staying in touch. That’s the reason for this podcast… staying in touch with some good people. And Blackberries and I phones and gadgets and apps are a reasonable way of doing that. As long as we don’t over do it. And as long as we don’t confuse friends with just somebody we met in the supermarket line.

 Friendship can be a very tricky thing. There’s a story about that in the Night Connections 2 personal audio cd. It’s called Temporary Friends. It’s in the current podcast. The guy in the story is probably the biggest threat to a slightly worn relationship…and he doesn’t mean to be. He’s the guy who was always there for her…because he’s her friend. That’s the kind of friend who’s always close to being a lover. And just as lust sometimes turns to love, love often turns to lust.

 If you like the story, you can just keep the podcast. Or if you want a fresh copy, just download it from the Night Connections 2 icon on the home page.  

 I only have a few friends. They’re important to me. That’s why the word friend is important to me. I guess it’s all in how you define the word Friend. My friend, and Proud Podcast Participant Dick Stadlen sent me a bunch of words that have some interesting and strange definitions. For example, coff-ee is a person upon whom you cough. Flat-ulence is an emergency vehicle that picks you up after you are run over by a steam roller. And a testicle is a humorous question on an exam.

 So what’s the non-Facebook definition of a friend? My Lady Wonder Wench has been my girlfriend for a long time. But she’s also my wife. Aside from family…because that’s a whole special class of friendship…what does being a friend mean ?

 A buddy of mine put his life on the line for me once…when we were both lifeguards at Coney Island, a long time ago. Another friend gave me a neck massage that I desperately needed while my Lady Wonder Wench was in a hospital. But how do you define the word ?

 I know the feeling…you never have to wear a mask around a friend. But I’m looking for a definition. How about, “A friend is a lover minus the lust.”

That works for me. What do you think ?

4 Responses to “The Masked Man”

  1. Dave says:

    I like your take on friendship.

    I recently calculated that there are presently 10 people on the planet whose opinion of me matters to me. The rest are uninformed, so if they decide that I am silly, stupid, naive, evil, sick, nasty, uncool or no damn good, they are making an uninformed decision. I can ignore it.

    Ten quality people make up my world and that is fine with me. Maybe #11 is out there; time will tell.


  2. Dick Butler says:

    Great Idea define friend; A person or persons you would want to be seen with no matter what anyone else thinks of you or them. Sister Helen Mary defined it This way a friend is an important part of life the others are just acquaintances who come and go

  3. aliasJean Fox says:

    I agree with Dave – friends are special, few, and sometimes far-between …. and the Internet makes it very easy to send chain letters, fictional information, provide your personal info to lots of people and entities who have no business having it, and have “friends” come out of the woodwork! I’m on Facebook but I don’t care for it because it’s too public. I have MySpace to share photos and my music with my spread-apart family. I think that’s quite enough. Even THIS blog is pretty public, but I try to edit my thoughts, and I know that you or David will take out anything that’s too personal.
    Oh – and I hope I’m one of your friends ……..

  4. Betsy says:

    Interesting way to look at it Dave, and I bet even famous people who are “known” by everyone on the planet, feel the same way. Probably even more so.