Thursday, August 14, 2008

FunSuckers and JoyBringers

I have lots of friends, and usually I consider that a good thing. But every once in a while I can't help but notice that some of my friends can sometimes be a "FunSucker".

My definition of a FunSucker is someone who somehow manages to suck every ounce of happiness and joy from any event, activity or comment. Like a person who tells you that reason why what you're wearing is not flattering is because your body just wasn't made to look good or will never look good in clothes or some such other thing.
In my experience (and since it's my term, my experience gets to be the expert) they are also the kind of people who perceive the world through a negative lens for themselves as well and are always looking to prove just how much their life sucks worse than anybody else's. The "you think you've got it bad, well...." kind of people.
They're kind of like the black hole of a friendship.

My most recent FunSucker ambush was earlier this week. I had been having a fun day, actually was humming under my breath most of the day at work and had some friends over in the evening. Our conversation turned to me being single (as somehow conversations tend to flow to the most innermost of my thoughts) and I casually mentioned how this can sometimes be a struggle for me. My friend's response was "well you better get used to it, because you're probably going to be single for life. So deal with being lonely, you're stuck with it". DING! all the Fun/Joy of the day immediately sucked out of the room, sucked out of the evening, even sucked out of the day.

In opposition I also have some "JoyBringer" friends. These are the folks whom you just can't help but be happy to be around. They bring fun and happiness to even the most mundane of tasks.

In fact, I have one such friend that my ex-boyfriend used to jealously call "Fun Rob". He would complain that all Rob and I would do is drive around and yet somehow I considered it the most fun activity. And when he and I would drive around it was not as much fun. And he was right. Something about Rob's pleasure in simple things and joy at driving down a new street and blasting the radio was always just so much fun.

Now sometimes the FunSucker and the JoyBringer are not even people but just activities or events or circumstances.

For me, I seem to find many more JoyBringers than FunSuckers fall into this category.
For example, no matter how nasty my day, seeing a rainbow - the symbol of God's promise to Noah to never again destroy the earth in a flood -makes me smile. It reminds me of God's presence and His love.
Or the way I can only smile and sing along when I hear Great Big Sea. It's hard to stay in a bad mood with that music playing.

The fact that laughter is contagious. Or that when the sun shines, people sort of instinctively close their eyes, and turn their faces towards it and smile.

The part that makes me sad is that the FunSucker always trumps the JoyBringer. It doesn't matter how many instances of JoyBringer you've received in a day, it only takes one FunSucker to nullify them.


ghanima said...

Here's something that will probably totally make your day: I have always (well, for as long as I've known you any way) considered you a JoyBringer.

Margaret said...

Is FunSucker Friend single? I would guess that they are, and are just speaking from their own fears and insecurities. It was probably all about them; I highly doubt if much of that comment was about you.

Perhaps it is time to ditch FunSucker Friend because it doesn't sound like s/he is a real friend. I have myself severed relationships with so-called "friends" and have found my life to be all the better for it.

And I agree with Ghanima's comment above.

By the way, sorry, I forgot to ask if you still wanted to come up to visit me and my little peas (and Ben). If you have time you're always welcome! But no pressure or expectations here, I know you're one busy lady.

notweasel said...

Has it occurred to anyone else that if you just add a little space... FunSucker suddenly sounds far more entertaining?

Let's try it..

Fun Sucker.

Oooh... I'm feeling happier already...