I don’t know if you’ve noticed, internet, but we’ve had a lot of snow this winter.
Or at least I have. Not me, personally, but the Town-Where-I-Live.
You get it.
At any rate, my roommate Varenka and I are responsible for clearing out the sidewalk in front of our downtown apartment (sidenote – why do we call the people with whom we rent apartments our roommates when we don’t technically share a room? Is there a better word for this? The English use flatmates, but apartment-mates just sounds awkward. Just me?).
This is the first time that I’ve been responsible for regularly shoveling a walk, and while it’s not a horrifically arduous task given our sidewalk is only about 5 feet in length, it’s an annoying one. Especially given the fact that there have been many storms this winter that have required Varenka and I to shovel more than once a day. Sometimes three, four, or five.
My initial reaction to shoveling the snow was to wait until the snow had stopped falling to shovel the walk, because then I’d just have to shovel it once. There’s a city ordinance in Town-Where-I-Live that states that you get fined if the snow is still there 24 hours after a big storm, so I figured that as long as I did it after the storm I’d be fine.
Big mistake. I went outside to shovel the walk and realize that people had had to walk through the 5-inch deep snow in front of my house all day, which was conspicuously the only house on the block which hadn’t been shoveled. Which made me feel like an asshole, because it only took me two minutes to shovel my sidewalk, whereas those people who had to walk by my house probably had wet feet all day long.
I realized that shoveling the walk frequently during the storm is a courtesy, and while, yeah, I technically didn’t need to, not doing it makes me a selfish person. Who knows how many old ladies with canes need to walk by my house on a day basis? What if an old lady slips and falls and breaks her hip in the snow outside my house? THAT’S ON ME.
“But how does this relate to your very catchy blog title, Cassandra?” you’re probably asking. I’m getting there.
Friendship takes work. You can’t just check in with your friends when the storms are over. You need to be there for both the good times and the bad, the times that they are being really annoying, the bad breakups, and the clingy periods. Good friends are there for each other no matter what. Good friends always keep their sidewalks shoveled.
You know those people in your life who are supposedly your friends, but only seem to check in when they need something from you? Or when you’ve won the lottery or gotten a really lucrative job or are recently hot and single? Those are the people who only shovel their walk when all the snow has stopped falling. And you’re the old lady with the cane, whose hip is now broken because your friend is an asshole.
And so I say unto you, internet, shovel your damn walk. Check in with your friends. And maybe walk in front of different houses.
That last line is a metaphor for getting better friends. Also maybe a walker.