I’ve met a lot of people in my life. I’d say most of these people would fall under the acquaintance category. You know what I mean, those people who you kinda sorta know, but then they call you by your first name and you respond with a “hey… buddy.” Or maybe you do know their name or even the names of their family members, but you don’t really give a crap about what any of them have been up to for the past few years since you last seen them.
There’s a world of difference between a friend and an acquaintance. I wouldn’t think twice about inconveniencing myself for a friend, but would consider other options for acquaintances. I wouldn’t hesitate to tell a friend exactly what was going through my mind at that moment in time, but I’d sure as hell censor those same thoughts for an acquaintance.
That’s the thing: when you make a friend, you exchange small pieces of yourselves. It’s basically a mild form of giving someone your spare key so they can feed your pet while you’re out of town. When we cross the friend threshold on our way up from Acquaintance Land, we usually learn something new about the person we befriended. This knowledge leads to an overall deepening of relationships that becomes the foundation of said friendship.
Well, look at that. I managed to take something as organic and beautiful as friendship and break it down into something formulaic. Captain Robot strikes again. My point is that acquaintances come and go, but friends generally remain friends forever. The way you can tell whether you have a friend or an acquaintance lies in the reunion. Acquaintances always have to rebuild relationships. Friends simply pick up where they left off.