Could you, would you, with a fox? (You know, from Seuss’ “Green Eggs and Ham”).
Here’s my question: can you completely disagree with someone and still, somehow, have a friendship?
My friend AD is the polar opposite of me. She’s left, waaaaaaaaay left, on a whole different plane than me. We have had discussions about faith, politics, and social issues. We usually end up disagreeing, but the lovely part is that we can somehow (yeah, I know, cheesy) agree to disagree. And you know what? We’re surprisingly OK with that. At the end of the playdate, our kids nodding into their carseats, the juice boxes falling from grimy hands, we hug, make plans for another playdate soon, and go our separate ways, knowing that we’ll chat within a few days.
Would it be easier if we agreed? Sure, but definitely less interesting. People seem to gravitate towards those they’re on the same page with. But how boring is homogenity? (Homogeneousness? Noun form, anyone??) Simpler is not always better.
Do we try and “convert” one another? At least on my part, not consciously. In fact, the very characteristic that I like so much in her (and she, I hope, likes in me) is the difference in position. Giving each other a “run for our money”, as it were.
It reminds me a great deal of my husband, R. Coming from two cultures, we frequently run into differences of opinion on how things should be done. But one of the private vows we made to each other when we married was that we wouldn’t seek to convert each other. The very thing that made us different (in this case, religion) was one of the things we loved. Losing the difference means losing that which gives us such opportunity for connection. Sounds illogical, huh?
So I would, in a box. And I would with a fox. And a liberal, and a pro-choicer, and a Catholic. Would you?