The Magic Of Friendship

| GA, USA | Geeks Rule, Travel

(I’m chatting online with a good friend whom I’ve only met in person once, although we do communicate daily. She’s been telling me about a recent trip to Orlando, Florida and how much she loved it and wants to go back. We are both huge Harry Potter fans.)

Friend: “So, I might have to take a week-long vacation in February because I’ll have four weeks-ish of time saved by then and it’s use it or lose it come April 1st. So I was thinking… of taking you to Hogwarts for a few days. What do you say? I’m 95% sure I can bankroll the whole thing.”

Me: “That sounds awesome, actually.”

(At first I think our plotting is more wishful thinking than reality. With the high cost of a week-long vacation I think it’s too much for my friend to afford. But as we discuss the logistics of such an adventure I realize she’s completely serious. Before I know it everything’s booked.)

Friend: “I’ll buy you your [interactive] wand, too.”

(I make sure to thank my friend profusely. I’ve been unemployed for several years (despite efforts to find work) so I don’t have much cash for expensive trips. If not for her massive generosity in “kidnapping” me I’d likely never get to visit Hogwarts.)

Never Truly Game Over

| Canada | Awesome, Health & Body, Money

This is something I like taking pride in as a gamer. I’m a member of a small community online dedicated to gaming and listing collections. The community is tight knit and almost like a family. Unfortunately, one of the longtime members had passed away from cancer and the community has been pretty devastated by the loss.

One of the deceased member’s last tweets on her Twitter account was a request that someone does a cancer charity marathon in her memory if she passes away soon. It took a bit of planning, but the site owner, his girlfriend, and his best friend scheduled a weekend-long gaming marathon while the rest of us pooled in our money for the cause.

The marathon was an absolute blast and everyone agreed it was a perfect celebration of life for her. In the end, we managed to raise over $3000 from our small community to help patients and victims of cancer.

It may seem small, but we all hoped it would help make a difference.

Broke Up But Not Broken

, | Bulgaria | Awesome, Coworkers, Love/Romance, Popular

(I have a long-distance boyfriend in Germany and I am working on moving there to study and be near him. It’s all going well until he suddenly stops talking to me, doesn’t pick up his phone, and doesn’t answer any messages. I am worried sick that something’s not right, that he can be ill or something similar, until one day I accidentally discover he has someone on the side and his not talking to me is his method of breaking up. I am so thrown away that I can’t react adequately, aside from sending him a message to tell him I know. A few hours later, I text my friend in southern Germany, telling her about what I’d found out and asking her if we can Skype soon. I don’t get a reply all day, so I get even sadder. Later I have to go to a tiny second-hand boutique with my coworker, but I am so numb I don’t even know how to tell her.)

Coworker: “Oh, look at this dress! I can’t possibly fit into it, but you should try it!”

Me: “Oh, come on, [Coworker]; it’s pink. I don’t like pink…”

Coworker: “Yes, I know, but you know how hot you’d look in it? Your boyfriend will love it!”

Me: “No, he won’t; he’s not my boyfriend anymore.”

Coworker: “What?”

Me: “Found out today he’s with someone else over there. Didn’t even have the guts to tell me he wants to break up.”

Coworker: “…but you just got accepted into [University].”

Me: “I know. And I’m going. It’ll all get better. But right now shopping with you is what’s keeping me together, basically.”

Coworker: *looking at me disapprovingly* “This won’t do. Come on, take this dress. I don’t care you don’t like it; you’re trying it on. And whatever else you want.”

(I hated the dress, but I tried it on anyway; didn’t buy it, though. I tried on a bunch of clothes and got myself some really nice things.)

Coworker: *cheerfully* “How about it? Those jeans you got are really awesome! I really don’t get your thing with olive green tops, though, but I guess olive green is to you what pink is to me. How are you feeling?”

Me: *trying to sound as cheerful* “All right, I guess…”

Coworker: “This won’t do at all! Come, there’s a [Chain Supermarket] across the street and they’re having an American week.”

Me: “Huh? What’s that got to do with anything?”

Coworker: “Chocolate chip cookies.”

(I got three packs of cookies and also some nice mustard and Spaetzle (noodles from the south-west of Germany). My mood got a bit better, because … well, cookies can do that for you sometimes. My coworker chatted with me about the city I was about to move to, because she had visited for a short time, and kept reassuring me I’ll feel all right there. Much later that day, as I was about to go to bed, I got another text from my friend in southern Germany, whose phone had been off and she had gotten my text just then. We Skyped the next day, decided collectively and with some help from her mom that my ex was a spineless swine, and chatted about a hundred things that actually cheered me up. I nearly broke out in tears, because this was her only day off and instead of chilling with her boyfriend, she spent five hours Skyping with me! A week later I got a care package from her, her boyfriend, and her family, full of sweets and eco-friendly cosmetic products and even some jewelry! It’s been more than two years and I’m still overwhelmed whenever I think of it. I’m living in Germany now and this friend gets small presents from me regularly. I’m still in touch with my old coworker and I’ve promised her that she’ll be my maid of honour whenever (and if) I get married. I love my friends.)

They Heard The Twilight Bark

| USA | Awesome, Pets & Animals, Popular, Technology

(Through a mutual love of a dog based podcast I have made many friends around the world. Having met on social media a smaller group of us frequently chats in a chat group.  One of the chat group members is a trans-male and has his first appointment in a city an hour away from his home to get his testosterone shots.)

Friend #1: “[Trans Friend] got in a fender bender and is having a panic attack. Who lives in [State]?”

(The call was put out on social media to the larger group and we find a chat group friend who can meet up with him. Not only does she meet him but gets him to his appointment and to her place before making sure he gets a taxi home with a driver who is trans accepting. I call him once he is home.)

Him: “I can’t believe everyone pulled together for me like that. I was so scared to be in the city dressed male. I was only expecting to walk from the parking garage to the clinic, not go on public transportation.”

Me: “Well, we love you, silly. Also your dog has some majestic floof.”

Him: “I love your dogs, too.”

(We get each other.)

A Thoughtful Translation

| ON, Canada | Awesome, Employees, Popular

(I’m part of a large Facebook group for professional translators. A colleague mentions offhand that they are worried about not being able to complete jobs for clients due to advanced illness. Shortly thereafter, I saw the following post:)

Group Member: “For those of you who’ve missed it in all the many hugs that have been going to [Colleague] this afternoon, we’re setting up a backup team that she can refer jobs to when her health lets her down and a deadline is due. The idea is that we all try to keep a little bit of spare availability in case this should happen so that [Colleague] can pass jobs to whoever’s the most suitable/available. Needless to say, the money earned for the job still goes to her!”

(Within an hour, some 50 people had volunteered their services. It was amazing to watch a community come together so quickly!)

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