My friends are my family,

unfettered by ties of blood and other quirks of fate that can’t be undone. My friends are the family I choose, not the family that begat me. The family that begat me doesn’t always get me, yet they themselves are different aspects of me in the flesh, the same DNA spun up into three different forms, the same cards dealt three different ways. My true friends would do any thing in the world to help me, because they know I’d never ask it of them. My nuclear family is a time bomb waiting to blow, the tracks of blood mute testimony to the struggle for a happy family, just like the wall-hanging asks God for. False friends are the people who hold you back, wrapping you in a fuzzy pink shawl of comfort and mediocrity, village communism, the leveling influence of jealousy, all attempts to break ranks brought tumbling down by the jeers of the crowd screaming for blood. Any excess of income must be balanced by excess outgo to placate the judgments of the losers. Any excess of confidence must be subjected to the doubts of the naysayers. They wrap you up in all their expectations and smother you. They prick you gently in the softest point in your thick hide and proceed to castrate you, essential to proper domestication of the wild species. To get ahead, you gotta’ leave others behind. If you slow down to let them keep up, they’ll just slow down further until no one goes anywhere, village communism. Welcome to the third world.