When I was a kid, I used to have imaginary friends. But I never made up my own imaginary friends--they were all characters from my favorite stories.
Why do I feel like I'm 5 again?
Each week, I read Catherine Newman's excellent "Ben & Birdy" column. I usually skip the comments, but sometimes I take a peek or drop in a line--and what do I find in one of the recent columns but a huge wacked-out comment thread with people freaking out over the fact that there's a picture of Ben in pink pants and is that okay and why can't we say it isn't and blah blah blah and then we wind up with some discussion of whether the author is married to her "boyfriend" and blah blah blah and all of a sudden I realize that I'm thinking, Hey! You people leave her alone! Those pants are fine, and she's a great mom, and Michael's a great dad, and what business is it of yours, anyway!!? Because I remember reading once that she reads all the comments. And some of those comments would hurt my feelings, I know. And she's a great person, and how dare they say such hurtful things! And then defend themselves because "this is a forum for discussion, blah blah blah..." I'm getting all bitchy and feisty, as though I actually know this woman. As if these people were walking up to her on the street and insulting her choices--my friend's choices! How dare they?!
So apparently Catherine Newman is now my imaginary friend. I figure this means either that she is an extremely talented writer, capable of eliciting great empathy--or I am an extremely pathetic adult who uses the phrase "blah blah blah" more than any one person should be allowed to do. I'm sure it's the first one. Yeah, that's it, the first one.
But if any of my "friends" were ever to read this blog, I'd say...
Honey, those pants are just fine. And what the hell do they know, anyway? Stupid Betties.