I have the world’s worst friend. His terrible fault is that he doesn’t return phone calls. It’s not personal. He doesn’t return anyone’s phone calls. I have a system for dealing with this. I leave two messages that I know won’t be returned. Then I call and swear a blue streak on his answering machine. Then he calls me back because he knows I’m serious. Didn’t work this time though. So this morning I pulled out the ultimate ammo and called him at work.
I was actually hoping he wasn’t in so I could leave a message with the receptionist. I was trying to decide between, “This is his doctor. We need him to call back right away about those test results.” and “I need to get his response to that paternity claim.” when he answered. (These are even better when you know he works at a church.)
Why do I bother, you ask. Well, we’ve been friends for almost 20 years including the year and a half we went out and we pick up the conversation right where it left off. Seems like I’m not the only person he’s been blowing off. One friend called him to meet while he was in town for Christmas. He managed to call that friend back right as the friend was driving back out of state. Another friend decided it was his New Year’s resolution to get in touch with people he hadn’t talked to in a while. My friend hasn’t called him back yet. Then he mentioned that he got a Christmas card from another mutual friend (and an ex of mine) signed by him and a female person. Actual quote – “I thought it was his girlfriend until I looked at the picture and saw him holding a baby.”
Ok, now that would have made me call immediately. That got my curiousity all up in the air. Did someone knowingly breed with him and then run screaming into the night as she realized what she had done? Inquiring minds want to know. I gave my friend a deadline to call the ex and call me back. He promised to do it before April. I gave him a week. It won’t happen. If it doesn’t happen he’s going to have to give me the ex’s cell number so I can call and ask. If he had had it in front of him I would have gotten it and cut out the middle man.
Then there was the ultimate. He was given the job of finding out if another mutual friend (and another ex of mine) was OK because he lives in Thailand. This was his job because he lives just down the street from this guy’s parents and could stop for a chat. He forgot.
Me: That’s it. It’s final. You are officially the worst friend ever.
Me: Someone asks you to find out if your friend is alive or dead and you forget?
Him: I’m sure I would have heard if he wasn’t ok.
Me: What if they “forgot” to call you?
That shut him up for a while. He put it back on his to-do list. I had him add “Call about baby” with “Call Heather back” immediately following it. I had him add “Call New Year’s Resolution guy back” after me because I like to think I’m high up on a list of things never to get finished.
It’s sounds like maybe he’s depressed. I’ve gone through that phase before. The only way he’ll react is if you stop calling him all together.