The Bell Curve

Bell-Curve“You know how when you don’t know someone you can tell them anything about yourself and be completely comfortable with it, but then when you get to know them better it gets harder and harder to tell them things?”

He looked at me inquisitively. It was a normal look for him. The slightly raised eyebrow. The intense glare that seemed both insightful and intimidating, causing me to search the building to escape his eyes.

“Yeah, I see what you’re saying, but I think it’s more of a bell curve. You know? Like when you first meet someone…” he paused so his palm could rub against the bottom of the imaginary bell shape. “it’s really hard to talk to them and really awkward, but then you get to know them better and it gets really easy,” his hand again paused. Above his head this time. “but soon it gets difficult all over again.”

I watched intently as his hand rode the opposite side of the bell. My thinking face on, an inquisitive glare, I watched as he set his hand back on the table and he continued to look at me.

“Yeah… Yes.” I decided. “That’s exactly what it is.”

We must be somewhere in between the top of the bell and the very beginning, I thought. I had just told him details of my life that I had never told anyone and it was surprisingly easy. And it also might have been a very bad idea.

He’s a tall guy, with a somewhat emaciated appearance, but also a careful and interesting insightfulness that intrigues me. The conversation started with that intrigue and ended with me exploring the ends of it. At the end I felt relieved. A burden had been lifted from me. A secret, that had never seemed to be a very good one anyway, had finally been released into the world. At the end of it I think he felt special, as if we had bonded, become closer. And we did, but only in the sense that we moved a little up the side of the bell curve. The bell curve meant to describe friendships that in my experience eventually dissolve into nothing… Friendships.


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