This is my best friend, Emily.
Isn’t she pretty? And the best part about Em is that she’s even prettier on the inside, if you can imagine. But more than being pretty inside and out, Emily is one of the funniest people I’ve ever met in my life. She might be the funniest.
Emily and I met at my very first adult job in college. She actually hired me. We were legal assistants at a prominent law firm in Tallahassee, Florida, with dreams of big legal careers in front of us. Emily and I worked for different attorneys and our offices were around the corner from each other. In order to chat during the work day, we sent each other instant messages. We couldn’t see each other from our desks, but I would send an instant message to her and then I’d wait. About 30 seconds later, I’d hear Emily snickering at her desk. Which would make me start to laugh. Then, about 30 seconds after that, a hysterical instant message from Emily would pop up on my computer screen and I’d bust out in silent giggles.
It was a game for us. See who could make the other one laugh out loud. Emily always won.
Eventually, the office manager at the firm caught on to our shinanigans and decided to split us up. Emily was moved downstairs to a different office and I stayed upstairs. But our instant messages continued. Only now, I’d send an instant message to her and about 30 seconds later my desk phone would ring. When I answered, all I’d hear was Emily snickering hysterically on the other end. She never said anything. Just laughed and hung up. A few minutes later a message from Emily would pop up on my screen, I’d call her, and die laughing as quietly as possible.
This was how we spent our days.
We were star employees.
Its been many years since Em and I worked together. We haven’t even lived in the same state since college. But we continue to keep our friendship alive and kickin’ through phone calls, letters, visits, and emails. But mostly, we keep in touch through instant messaging. A couple afternoons a week at work, I’ll get an instant message from Emily. And they are still the same. We still make fun of celebrities. We still complain about boys. We still try to spell out our bodily noises.
But the other day, Emily broke her own record. She outdid herself.
Without going into too much detail, I was expecting a ballerina from the New York City Ballet at work one day last week. It was a male dancer. Which you would think is funny enough in itself, but you just hold your horses. It gets so much better.
So, earlier that day I sent an instant message to Emily telling her about my male dancer guest. When I got to the train station to pick up the guest, it was hard not to notice how short he was. I mean, really, really short. Shorter than me and I’m 5’5. I know it was wrong, but I immediately sent a text message to Emily saying, “My male dancer is really short!”
A couple minutes later, I’m riding in the car with the male dancer when my cell phone rings.
“Hello?” I say.
“HOLD ME CLOSER, TINY DAAAANCER!” Emily sings out.
I didn’t know what to do. He was sitting RIGHT THERE. And, just like at work, I had to try to stifle my laugh as much as possible.
“Oh, hi,” I say in my forced professional voice. “Can I call you back later today?”
“COUNT THE HEADLIGHTS ON THE HIIIIIIIGHWAY!!!”
“Okay, great. I’ll call you later.”
“LAY ME DOWN IN SHEET OF LIIIIINEN!”
“YOU HAD A BUSY DAY TODAAAAAY!!”
Its reassuring to know that even though we live completely separate lives now, even though we live across the country from each other, Em and I can still crack each other up just as good as we did sitting around the corner from each other at the law firm in college.