Why do we love Ross, Joey, Chandler, Monica, Rachel and Phoebe so much? The answer is because all of them remind us of our own group of friends.
Every group of friends finds a way to draw comparisons between each character in the show and each one of the friends in the group. Someone is the silly one, the lovable geek, the witty and sarcastic one, the obsessive yet kind-hearted one, and the “how is she so dumb yet we still love her enough to be a part of the group” one.
“Friends” reminds us of how powerful friendship really is and how a bond can be created between a group of people who come from different places, and are so different. College is a special place that gives us all an opportunity to experience this kind of chemistry.
College is in many ways a clean slate. Freshman year, everyone gives everyone else a fair shot because we know that no one’s any better. By the end of the year, this large university with such a large student body offers us a group of friends who share or have developed the same humor, interests and bonds. There is a place in college for everyone. Whether it be the Pakistani Student Association, the school newspaper, your literary journalism class or anywhere else, almost everyone finds at least one other person they can call a true friend by the end of the year.
Sophomore year and junior year are when you build more relationships and start to subconsciously build your deepest friendships. Unfortunately, many of us don’t take a chance to step back and reflect on those we would gather with daily at the “Central Perk Café.”
We may not realize until the final quarter of our senior year that we didn’t get to spend as much time with the core groups of friends, and really let them know how much we appreciate them.
Now I am not trying to make anyone nostalgic or teary-eyed, but I recently looked back on my junior year this year, and recollected all the moments I have had with those whom I consider my best friends, and I want to show you how a quick stroll through memory lane, a lane that still has some concrete left to cement, can make you feel true happiness and appreciation.
We each have our own definition of a good friend, and we each express our love differently. Here are some examples:
You know someone is a good friend when they stay on the phone with you when you are stuck in traffic just to keep you company.
When you get random texts that quote songs you’ve enjoyed singing together like “kiss me through the phone, I’ll see you later on” or “see you in my nightmares.”
When they organize and throw you the only birthday party you’ve had since the third grade and make it your best one.
When they make fun of you and say “you’re not that cool or smart. I could have another one of you in a minute” to keep you humbled in the most fun-loving way.
When they ask you how a big job interview or the big exam went, reminding you that someone listens, remembers and cares.
When they argue with you about whether infants should be allowed to wear swimsuits out of modesty and fear of pedophilia and still say goodnight to you before you sleep.
When they pick up the newspaper every week and read all your articles, even though they have no clue about sports.
When they randomly pay for dinner, lunch or even cook you dinner, like chicken tikka masala or enchiladas.
When they help you repair your sideview mirror on your car after you got too confident with your parking skills and slammed the car parked next to you.
When they take all the jokes making fun of them, and never seriously get mad once.
When they pick you up when you’re in a funk.
When they tell you that you are doing something wrong not to make you feel bad, but to make you a better person.
When they accept Ryan Braun, Brett Favre, Kirk Hinrich and 50 Cent as the most important people in your life.
When they go out with you to eat late at night when they are not hungry, but just to be there to give you company.
When they make you tea when you are tired, or give you a random compliment to make you feel better.
When they rock out hard in the car with you to the best or even silliest songs, sometimes even for eight-hour car rides.
When they take pictures of you with your favorite baseball player when you meet him, and never complain.
And when they cover for you when you saran wrap and shaving cream the wrong car, even though that prank was intended for them.
Everyone has their own stories, and their own memories. As the year comes to an end, look back and see who was really there for you. Who really showed that they cared, and did you care for them back? Remember the good times, and see how you grew from the bad together.
Whether you have three years, two years, one year or two weeks left with these friends, it is never too late to build some more memories and stronger bonds.
Your best friends are the ones who have helped make you the person you are today, and if you are happy with who you are, reward them.
Gooz, Big Z, Mumina, Maxiput, Tyler, Nick, Kareem, Nickon, D-train, Freshness, Mirza and more, this one is for you.