Friendship fights! Friendship breakups! Frenemies! For a lil closeted baby gay, friendship conflict tends to come with a heavy layer of queer subtext. Personally, I chose to express my frustration over not being able to kiss girls by becoming overly invested in them emotionally and then fighting over really stupid things. As someone who proudly claims to have nemeses, I’ve also had my fair share of frenemies through the years. Much like Kim Possible and Shego, my frenemies and I had our fair share of sexual tension.
There was Annie, who got a Barbie cash register for her birthday and then would NEVER LET ME BE THE CASHIER. We fought over that cash register endlessly. Our Barbies also had shared custody of a poodle, which caused a lot of conflict.
There was Ryan, who beat me out for the role of the mouse king in our elementary school’s production of The Nutcracker. The role was cast based on height, and she was a fraction of an inch taller than me, so she got it. I never recovered.
There was Cass, who I met during a summer day camp. She always wore a white visor, and she was mean to me for absolutely no reason. She wouldn’t let me sit next to her on the bus on the way to camp! For some reason, I had this elaborate Charlie’s Angels-esque fantasy about her where we kicked down the emergency door of the bus together and like idk did a heist or something? She was always wearing the white visor in these daydreams.
There was Becca, who I played cello with in the middle school orchestra. We were always in competition for solos. One time, I told her I had a crush on the boy who played bass in the orchestra. He had burned me a copy of his Yeah Yeah Yeahs CD. A week after I told her about my totally hetero crush, Becca started dating him.
There was Katie, who always made fun of my sports bras and told me I needed to start wearing cuter ones. We also used to fight over who got to be which character when we taught ourselves choreography from The Cheetah Girls.
There was Allie, who I was partnered with for a civics and economics project in 8th grade. The assignment was to pretend to be roommates, and we were randomly assigned jobs and salaries and had to budget our lives together. I suggested that we share a car and carpool to work every day, and she didn’t like that idea. Eventually, our disagreements over the project made me cry.
There was Logan, who was a mean cheerleader who hung out with all the popular boys I despised (they despised me, too). But Logan was in the middle school yearbook club, and I was the editor in chief, so she would suck up to me in order to get good assignments. So I asked her to french braid my hair every day in yearbook class, and she did.
There was Susie, who told everyone I wasn’t allowed to watch PG-13 movies. Specifically, we were at church youth group, and she quoted the movie Bruce Almighty, and I laughed along with everyone else, and then she loudly declared to the ENTIRE ROOM: “Wait, Kayla, you haven’t seen that movie! It’s PG-13, so your parents wouldn’t allow you!” I cried for three days.
There was Victoria, who literally punched me in the thigh when I didn’t cry during The Notebook. She also told me it was weird to bring a girl to the 8th grade dance, even if we were going as just friends.
There was Ellen, a fellow musical theater student at the arts high school I went to. We were somehow always up against each other for the same parts, and I once accused her of trying to steal my life.
There was Jenna, my doubles partner on my high school tennis team. Off the courts, we didn’t like each other one bit. On the courts, we were a fierce doubles team that made it to states every year. I should probably write a screenplay about this one.
There was Cecily, who was also an intern on Obama’s 2008 campaign. I was the star intern in the office until she showed up. She was smart, beautiful, and I hated her!!!!!!! One time we got into a competition to see who could recruit the most volunteers, and I won.
There was Devon, who one day got so mad at me for saying another girl was my best friend that she made me sign a “friendship contract” that pardoned me for the “horrendous crime” of loving someone more than her and also established her as my real best friend. The contract was drawn up and signed in Calculus class, where she also made a girl who sat next to us sign as our witness.
There was Kate, who asked me to run lighting for her senior dance project. Much like the civics and economics project in 8th grade, I became so invested in the work that she made me cry.
There was Stephanie, who changed her Facebook relationship status to “in a relationship” as a joke because she kept telling people that Finn on Glee was her boyfriend? I thought it was a weird joke, and it made me mad, so I refused to participate in our weekly tradition of secretly passing notes about the previous night’s episode of Glee during English class.
There was Jen, who I used to get into fights with at every party we ever went to together in college. We also worked at the college newspaper together. Our fights were dumb, mostly about nothing, and always alcohol-fueled. We’re both gay now.