“Male friendship, like a wave, requires a medium to travel in, a project or a context, material on which to display solidarity or insight or wit.”

Gabriel Roth, The Unknowns

Don’t think I’m giving away the milk here. All these insights into human behavior I’ve quoted over the last few weeks are just a theme along which an excellent story runs. This book reminded me what it was like when I was still assembling an appropriate personality out of clues I could puzzle out from normal people.

Like, I remember touring my future college with my mom, and walking about ten steps ahead of her, and she had to admonish me that that’s rude. I just had no idea before that. Five years later I’d still put headphones on while walking around with friends. But I wasn’t on the autistic spectrum; once I was alerted to social cues I could pick up on them. I often feel like I lack empathy. I can act manipulative, though I’m not actually any good at it. And I recognized a lot of this in Roth’s protagonist. And it felt good, to sympathize with a character but hate him too.

12 notes
  1. dalasverdugo said: same. had to learn to say people’s names to them. isn’t that crazy, Nick?
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