July to December 2015Parsonage Parables

Names for Friend

It is said that the Eskimos have 40-50 names for different kinds of snow. So why do we have one name for friend? If someone asks if you know a particular person, our answer is something like, “Oh, ya, he’s a friend of mine.” But aren’t they actually –

  1. Acquaintance.  Someone you’ve met along the way. Someone you know a bit but is really more of an acquaintance than a friend.
  2. Grouper.  Someone in your church or softball team or social group. You’re really more associated with them because of the group and you don’t connect much outside that group.
  3. Colleague.  Someone you work with. Over time they may become good friends, but your connection is through work. Even if you leave that work place, that’s your connection.
  4. Drifts.  These are friends that drift. At one time you were close, but for a variety of reasons your lives have drifted to different worlds and are not as connected now as you were at one point.
  5. Fallbacks.  These are friends that no matter how long between seeing them, you fallback like you were never apart. We have a group that we played volleyball with years ago and we all had boys. Our Boys R Us group are fallbacks. When we get together it feels like we see them every day.
  6. Buddies.  These are your close friends. Some have many, some have a few.
  7. Confidant.  Your closest friend or two outside your significant other.
  8. Friend with benefits. I call her my wife.

The next time someone says, “Do you know this person?”
“Ya, he’s a grouper.”
“He’s a fish?”
“No, you see Eskimos have 40-50 names… Ya, he’s a friend of mine.”

So I close with these two thoughts. Can’t we all just be friends? And don’t eat tliyelin (yellow snow).

3 thoughts on “Names for Friend

  1. OK.. now I going through ‘”catagorizing ” everyone. May need a spreadsheet and pivot table as some fall into more than one category. Just kidding, but thanks for sharing.

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