The Hot Stove of Friendship


The O.E.D. defines Trust thusly:

Syllabification: (trust)

Pronunciation: /trəst/

1firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something:

relations have to be built on trust

they have been able to win the trust of the others


[with object]

  • 1believe in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of:I should never have trusted her

[with object and infinitive]:he can be trusted to carry out an impartial investigation

(as adjective trusted) a trusted adviser

(trust someone with) allow someone to have, use, or look after (someone or something of importance or value) with confidence: I’d trust you with my life


It continues, but then, you get the point. I guess trust nthed is faith, or maybe blind faith, as though no matter what happens, you still have faith that things will turn out ok.

So then, trust doesn’t extend that far.  There’s a limit to it, a breakability of things such that one who had your trust can suddenly turn into one who no longer has your trust.  What happens then?  This person knows your history, things you’ve thought and said and confided, things you’ve kept from others in the hope that this one trusted friend might hold them for you.  And then it breaks, the trust, and you are left with this chasm in your chest, as if someone just ripped out a chunk of you and placed it on and ice sheet before dropping a hammer and sending it off into oblivion.  “There it goes,” you say, “that part of me that I’ll never recover, sent to sea with everything in my life.”

Next comes the fear, that someone will take what you’ve said and betray you to others, even if it is just a few soft words of cynicism, or an opinion about political leanings.

And then the sadness, knowing humanity has now assumed a different form, that the masses are potential predators to your honesty, threats to your truthfulness. What is left but to recoil, to slink back into the turtle shell of your existence, unwilling to peek out for fear of danger?  Perhaps these virtual worlds arise for the benefits of fraudulence.  Maybe the digitalk is really just an unconventional intimacy that allows for bullshit without accountability.

I had some other things in mind when I started this post, so I guess I’ve gone off the rails a bit here, but like a train, relationships built on trust can crash pretty hard.  Sometimes I think we’d all be better off back in the jungle, with Darwinian rules, where speed and strength and adaptability ruled the terrain, where one could trust daily life to be filled with threats and dangers and myriadother horrible things, where one didn’t have to be surprised when teeth appeared at one’s throat, where things like rampant shootings and terrorist bombings and gratuitous killings didn’t make us so fucking sad.



Catharsis noun

1the process of releasing, and thereby providing relief from, strong or repressed emotions.



By ccxander

One comment on “The Hot Stove of Friendship

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