You know how often people who break up have to have one last little fling before they end things for real? You know, you’ve broken up but you run into your ex by your bodega and he asks if you wanna get coffee and just catch up a little, and you say of course, and suddenly before you know what hit you, you have to break up all over again?
Well. I feel this is where we are. I wrote you a friendship breakup letter when you announced your intentions to wear Birkenstocks with socks- a well-deserved letter, I might add. But somehow our friendship continued, slightly trampled perhaps by your broad soles, but still fairly hale and hearty. I moved to New York City and you stayed in North Carolina and we wrote each other juicy emails which we enjoyed so much we thought we should publish them in a book. You came to see me; I came to see you. I even spent three months or so sleeping upon your couch when the pandemic caught me unprepared, which is either the mark of a great friend (you) or a great sponge (me). You’ve continued to give me advice about boys (or the lack thereof) and fashion and speaking in tongues, and I dished it right back to you, but alack and alas, all good things come to an end.
It’s one thing to take up something which you’re not sure your friend despises or not. It’s another to take up a sport which you know full well is the scraping from the bottom of a slop bucket, a sport to which the dullest of humanity commit themselves. A sport which instantly pegs you as a Certain Type Of Person, the Mennonite version of a Cali surf boy with peroxide in his hair, the kind of person who can never be a kindred spirit to me, and I thought until recently, to you. Did I not know you but at all? Volleyball, Lyn? VOLLEYBALL?
I know you have dabbled in this darkness before, but I’ve always been able to overlook it, as it was a casual kind of fling, a mere dabble, if you will. Dabbling, I can handle. A deep dive, a commitment, this level of enjoyment… it’s just not gonna work, little Lyn. You asked me if it would end our friendship if you told me you wanted to take up volleyball. When I assured you it would, you mumpsimus, you philistine, you snollygoster promptly played another few rounds, entangling yourself even more in its net. This kind of betrayal drives the final spike in the coffin.
Bump, set, spike, out of bounds, game. The end is here.
Have fun with your new life. Your life in which you wear aeropostale tees and denim skirts and adidas slides and plan your schedule around your tournaments. Enjoy your new friends who will only talk about volleyball and mini barns. I hope you’re happy. I hope you meet a short, athletic, bleached little man on the volleyball court at some tournament who is very enthusiastic about Sarasota, and you have short, athletic, enthusiastic little babies. You’ll need some joy to make up for the loss of my ever-ready wit and good will in your life. I wish you the best.
In the words of the great bard of olde, “I do desire we may be better strangers.” Goodbye.
P. S. Put down your pitchforks; this is tongue-in-cheek.