“Do you know how long we have known each other? I don’t know either, but it’s over 6 years. SIX YEARS!”
I messaged him on CollarMe so long ago, a cold call. He was very active on the forums: smart and funny, and an incorrigible flirt. His profile had a photo of his back then, broad and overtanned, tapering off to a tiny waist, cropped at the curve of his arse. These days it’s his six pack, a pose that I told him would have all the women swooning: It does. His profile also had a question in it, a conversation opener, so I took it.
He was new and eager then and he would explore ideas like a puppy rushing off to look at new toys. Sniffing at them, growling, batting them around, taking them in his mouth and shaking them, until he saw a different one and he would run at that one in the same way. It was hilarious and adorable to watch.
Over the years we have become such good friends, sharing each other’s challenges and triumphs, offering support and always a sympathetic ear. Sometimes we argue, rarely we hurt each other, but we are always fine, cautiously petting each other down if we do that. I know he has my back and I have his. He is often the first one I run to tell about something happening in my life.
“Look look!!” I will be all arm wavey and excitable.
Some version of “Feck! That’s brill!” will land in my inbox and make me laugh, glad I shared.
I call him ‘puppy’. He calls me ‘CC’. He won’t tell me what it means. I have stopped asking. He has promised that he will tell me when we meet, which might be a while yet since he’s so far away.
In the meantime, I’m lucky to have him in my life. I don’t say it to him enough (if ever): he will deflect it and call me a milksop, but he knows it to be true, don’t you, puppy?