"We don't notice any time pass / We don't notice anything / We sit side by side in every class"
My big brother and I have always been buddies. I rode bikes and climbed trees with him and his friends until the day he decided he couldn't be seen with me anymore. I had become (gasp) A GIRL, so I obviously couldn't keep up. And also? I had cooties. We're great friends again now, but for a while there, the cooties were a big issue.
In college, I hung out with a trio of boys who were like my brothers. Well... okay, two of them were like my brothers and the other one was like the distant cousin I made out with a few times. (Hi Lunkheds! I miss you!) They dragged me to the comic book store more often than was necessary, but they also loyally attended my dance/theatre performances, so we're even. I remember fondly the endless summer nights we spent on my parents' front porch, drinking and shooting the shit.
One of the perks of working at BioWare is having guy friends again. My girlfriends are gorgeous lovelies and I adore them, but sometimes a grrrl needs to hang with her boys. The energy is just different with boys. Simpler.
Except for a 900 lb. pink elephant in the room that most women and men who are friends refuse to address. The elephant's name is spelled S - E - X. Sometimes that elephant just sucks the air right out of the room and jacks up the dynamics. I am the lone female on our 20-person design team, so I'm particularly mindful not to instigate the jacking up. Sometimes it can't be helped.
On a day like this, for example, it is imperative that I wear a sundress to work or I would melt. And not "Oh my Goddess, Ewan!" melt, but "Ding dong! The Witch is dead!" melt. I walked over to the water cooler for a drink and had this exchange with a co-worker:
Dude: That's nice.
Dude: That. I like that. Your. Summer. Dress. There.
Prairie Wife Cookie was flattered that an old married biddy like me could still fluster a young geek, but Fierce Pinay Cookie was all, "It's gettin' kinda hectic. And also? Eew." I came back to my desk to debrief with my boy P-Tricky, because I can always count on him to be honest with me about that darned elephant.
A while back, Tricky had almost fumbled in the very same way Water Cooler Dude had, trying to walk the fine line between compliment and harassment. At the time, Tricky said, only half-jokingly, "It's like, you're a person 'cause we're buds, but you're also a woman. And that confuses me." So when I told him about WCD, he couldn't resist a knowing "Hee!"
Me: I had hoped that by 'that', he meant my dress and not my rack, but you know...
Tricky: Boys: Less complicated than you suspect.
Today, Tricky officially goes back to his home project after spending nearly nine months (You could've had another baby!) on Mass Effect. Yesterday, his boss from the other project came down here to tell him that his desk would be moved upstairs shortly, and gave him a few tasks to work on in the meantime. Tricky put on his headphones and started hammering away, because he's a team player like that. It made me a wee bit sad that he was leaving our team.
Mr. Kettle, during your sojourn here, there were a few times when you so enraged me, I almost had to kill you. But fer reals? I miss you already. Remember: Ms. Pot is only an IM away.