I must admit I had been looking forward to reading today’s offering since I first laid eyes on it’s acronym-laden cover. I’ve become a bit of a fan of the year-long quest sub-genre of non-fiction that has recently seen a bit of a surge – think Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project and A. J. Jacobs’ Year of Living Biblically – so could not go past Rachel Bertsche’s attempt, MWF Seeking BFF: My Yearlong Search for a New Best Friend.
I finally got my stony paws on a copy, cracked the spine and….it did not disappoint! Well, maybe it disappointed a little bit toward the end. But it also inspired me to initiate a social interaction with one of the denizens of the other shelf – the shelf that’s home to all the “keepers”. Here’s a picture of Fabrizio and I getting acquainted amongst the hardback sets of Tolkien, Rowling and Lewis while discussing the relative merits of bookplates.
Bertsche’s tome details her response to the conundrum she faced after moving to a new city with her new husband. With her closest friends living in another state, she decided that some new friendships would increase her satisfaction with life exponentially and duly commited herself to participating in 52 “girl dates” or friendship related meet-ups over the course of a year. That’s one a week.
* you’re a modern gal who is not ashamed to admit to having a few spare slots on her friendship dance card
* you have recently moved, or are planning to move, to a new town/city/state/country in which you have few social contacts
* you’re the kind of person who would sign up for a NaNoWriMo working collective for the friend-finding opportunities, and neglect to pen even a moderately engaging adjectival phrase during the entire month
* you consider the idea of meeting 52 people, the majority of whom are complete strangers, on a par with slipping into the seventh circle of hell
Overall I found this book to be a highly useful guide for those of us who are not natural social butterflies, but who would welcome the opportunity to build some new friendships. Note however that this book is particularly skewed toward female friend-finding. Bertsche herself acknowledges that male bonding generally develops in different ways to female bonding and therefore this would not be as useful for gents on the friendship hunt. Having said that, there is plenty of generic information in here that can be drawn from Bertsche’s experiences.
Until next time my friends, acquaintances and assorted lurkers on the periphery of my social circle,