One of my oldest friends, Brian is the greatest. He is funnier than me, and quicker than me, taller and blonder than me. More muscled and fit, considerably nicer, probably smarter, and definitely more adept at quoting Sex & the City. In several ways, he's who I long to be.
When I first met him in a subway station (which one, exactly, escapes me now) he seemed to me the picture of young urban sophistication. He wore a peacoat and had a Metropass. He went to an arts high school, knocked about all over town, and came out when he was like 4 years old. He lived the life I so desired, and just being around him made me feel alive and vital. He talked about pop culture like it mattered, conversations I'd had with Mary Hart, but only in my head. No one else I knew at the time knew so much about movies and television; sitting together in a café, we'd discuss the merits of Moulin Rouge for hours on end. I have the fondest memories of singing and dancing to our own obnoxious belting of the Rent soundtrack. The life I coveted so blatantly was quickly becoming my own.
It seemed we could do no wrong for each other, and soon we were friends the ways friends should be: unconditional, effortless, and ordinary, the way you don't consider your lungs, but there they are, critical and present, working away inside of you.
After a particularly difficult period, Brian is spending the next several months in Australia. Time for himself, to see the world, learn to surf. At my and his father's request, he has started a blog. If you like mine, you will like his - Funny and sweet and everything he is. I miss him terribly, in a strange and unfamiliar way. Even though we could sometimes allow several weeks to pass without a visit, knowing he was here in the city was like waking up knowing your kidneys hadn't been harvested while you slept.
But he's far away, a day ahead, a season behind, trying desperately to learn the backwards ways of the down under. I feel like I woke up in a tub full of ice, something missing.