I don’t have a lucky number, but if I did, that number would be the number 3. There is just something so damn magical about 3. In fact, the world should have their lucky number as 3, but perhaps if that happened then by default it would make it rather regular and therefore unlucky.
I never had a jersey growing up because I hated sports. I don’t gamble. And other than those two things I don’t know how one acquires such a magical number to have in their life. Or unlucky numbers for that matter. Someone should please tell Taylor Swift that 13 is usually considered unlucky and she should go ahead and stop painting it all over her hands before concerts. Of course, she is a millionaire and I am not so maybe she has something there with 13.
The closest thing I got to luck was deciding to collect rabbits feet when I was eight or nine. I was in a play and someone gave me one and I thought it was cool. But having ten is creepy, so out went that. I am no stranger to superstition, what with growing up in the thea-TRE and whatnot. I loved lame rituals before the shows, the hand squeeze, the star on your shoe, the break a leg phrase, the lack of being about to say MacBeth (doh!). But numbers never came into play was backstage shenanigans, that is, until I noticed patterns in the world of art, theater, and writing. And then later, MY LIFE! (dun dun DUNNNNNNNNN).
As I have said, if I had to have a lucky number I’d settle on 3. And it’s not so much that 3 is a number that provides luck as much as it’s a number that seems to follow most artistic people around. Case and point, the fabulous “rule of three” which is a basic story telling device that offers writers to remember that “things come best in threes.” 3 bears, 3 pigs, 3 blind mice, 3 stooges. Structurally and comically speaking, 3 is the funniest number. 1 beat begins a pattern (Larry walking into a pole), 2 beats confirms the pattern (Curly walks into the same pole), and 3 happens because a) an audience needs to see it just one last time (Moe runs into the pole) OR b) an audience needs to see it but gets surprised instead (Moe sees the pole, tries to duck under the pole, but as he ducks the pole lowers and he walks into it anyway.) If you go to four (Ralph now walks in to a pole), it’s not funny. You killed it. Stick to 3.
BOOM. Comedy learned. You’re welcome world.
Along with comedy, the influence of 3 is overwhelming. Triangles are so much cooler than rectangles, just ask Telly on Sesame Street (and p.s. why don’t we all have favorite shapes? I would love to meet someone who just, like, LOVES CIRCLES.) Shakespeare used it (3 witches), Freud used it (Id, Ego, Superego), and we use it in every day habits (3 meals a day, 3 strikes you’re out, 3 second rule…)
I just think 3 is very important, so when things come in 3s in my life I can’t help but notice their importance.
I have 3 girlfriends in my life who come in a package. And I want to write about them today.
When I first ventured off to college in 2005, I was lucky to have a nice collection of friends from high school who were near and dear to my heart. Despite having many individual girlfriends, I never had a group of girlfriends like they show on ABC Family all the time. I had convinced myself that I didn’t really get along with girls as a group and that I was just not that “girly.” Maybe I could only deal with one at a time. Which, I came to find after living in an apartment with 3 girls for 3 years (Double 3s!) that the statement was only half true.
Basically, I needed these 3 girls to show me how to belong to a group. And they did. They really did.
(In a good way, not like in a cult way)
I have been out of college for 3 years now, so it is only fitting that I acknowledge these 3 today. And, no, I am not one who still wishes she was in college or wishes that she was still in a shitty apartment on the second floor of a complex with the reputation of “Rapeway.” Nor am I someone who wishes my 3 girls were any closer to me now then they are (we currently reside in four different states). I guess I just miss them and appreciate them and look forward to the time that the 3 and me will be in har-mo-ny. (Sorry, was rhyming, too far? That’s why I need my girls. Right there.)
Lauren Witek, Sarah Hall, and Jennifer Brandon are 3 amazing human beings. Truth be told I am closer to some (Lauren) more than others (Jenn) and I see eye to eye with some (Lauren) more than others (Sarah) and I relate to some (Jenn) more than others (Lauren) and keep in touch with some (Sarah) more than others (Lauren). All and all I have a distinct relationship with each (Lauren) as close (Sarah) and dear (Jenn) friends.
But there is something about the 3 that as a whole means the world to me. Like the fact that I have such diverse individual bonds with each mixed in with the overall bond of sharing a living space with all for so long, makes a unique ommmmm-like balance I think each end needs to survive. Like a triangle puzzle that fits when it’s whole (and lights up like a cool alien laser thing and that shoots out beams of awesome light and flies and stuff. Too far again? Okay.)
I met Lauren my first week of freshmen year of college in the dorm room across from me. I talked her in to joining me in the comedy troupes, and the rest was history. She found a funny bone to apply to her real career goals, and I found a girlfriend on a troupe that was mostly males. We are the two peas in a pod friends. I like to think we bring out the most playful of each other. Like a duo of cocky, slinging out catchphrases like “I’m glad we’re us” and breaking out in song and dance like we were the first girls ever to break out into song and dance to that hugely popular song. On the one end I think we are a lot alike in our desire to host and be there for others, on the other end Lauren has a huge knowledge threshold of stuff relatively unknown to me. I spent many a nights having Lauren do my eye makeup for me and telling me what clothes I should throw away immediately. I spent days seeing her color coordinated notes and her slow eating skills and doing things “to be healthy, and to feel good” as opposed to my mantra “God dammit just look skinny already!” I also watched her make choices that lead her to change for the better. Her ability to adapt and grow was amazing to me. I still cringe at the first time Lauren told me that she’s “not going to make a fool of herself onstage” and four years later, she was dressed in a fat suit and lesbian wig. She even once let her then boyfriend lay grinding on her back onstage as if they thought that’s how sex works. All for a joke, So proud. So proud. I hope in the end Lauren is proud of me and the lady I have become. I’m still terrible at eye make-up, but at least I know to look twice before heading out the door and more importantly I learned from her how to go to extra mile with being a friend. Lauren is the queen of “the thoughtful” from balloons on a birthday to a t-shirt for getting an A. Lauren is all about it. As well as all about the silly. She is someone I both look up to and think I am like. She’s my reflection. I use her as a gauge with how I am doing as a person. Which, according to us, is usually pretty kick ass awesome. She’s like my id.
Sarah Hall I met in the dorms as well freshmen year, but it was about a semester and a half before I think we became relative friends. Sarah Hall is what I call my opposite friends. It’s exactly as it sounds. Any larger picture belief I have I am fairly certain Sarah has the stark opposite view (though to be honest I can’t confirm it as I made a decision a long time ago to not talk religion and politics with my best.) Her upbringing was different, her goals were different. She is pink, I am green. She likes new and nice things, I wait for my hair brush to break, tape it, wait the tape to get unsticky and then I consider buying a new brush. She’s designer and I am thrift. She likes TMI facebook posts, I write TMI blogs. Seriously, the list goes on and on. It is no surprise that Sarah and I have been the most wobbily with each other, but we always land just fine, steady as a rock. I think it’s because as opposite friends we almost come full circle in being alike. Sarah is strong and tough and a fucking good, fucking supportive, fucking awesome friend. Out of the 3 I have received more high praise for things I am usually self-conscious of from here more than anyone. She has defended me when I no doubt offend, and she sure has hell doesn’t put up with crap from anyone, including me. And I like that. Where Lauren is more my reflection, I feel like Sarah is more my balance of getting the other side, of getting girls. The more I try to understand Sarah, just like she tries to understand me, the more I think we come out better people. She’s like my ego.
Jennifer Brandon is no doubt the most detached from the 3. Sometimes it seems like over the years the circle feels a little smaller due to Jenn’s schedule. But I almost feel like that is her role. I met her sophomore year through Lauren and she moved in filling the hole of evil we had to deal with the year before in our apartment. Jennifer is my idol friend. On paper and in life, she is just so damn artistically perfect. She is an artist, a kind hearted girl, almost girl next door but can use power tools, super smart, good with her hands, cheery, fun, and basically everything you as a young woman should aspire to be. Though she is irresistible, it’s unfair to paint a picture of perfection. What was nice with living with Jenn and breaking through her shell was seeing what a toll that that much upkeep does to a person. Far from perfect, I reveled in late night conversations on the kitchen counter while she ate tuna straight from the can and told me she had failed to shower for three days (yet her hair was perfect). Going off the idea “powerhouse” (no fat) I really see Jenn as that gentle giant. This enigma of talent covered by a will to do good. I speak of her in more poetic terms because I feel like having her around made me aspire to be better, to know more, to get more busy. Also, being around her showed me to ground myself and know when to say no to things. She absent not because she doesn’t care, but because she cares too much about too many. Because the moments that you do get Jenn all to yourself, it’s like she’s your closest confidante in the whole world. Amazing how she does that. She is my superego.
And with the 3 I was able to learn a lot of myself, from my playful reflection, my strong, loyal view of the other side, and my idol. My fear with acknowledging this 3 is that I was not a part of it, only a student to them. I hope I gave Lauren some lessons in how to do laundry, and gave showed Sarah how to pick up her shoes, and maybe encouraged Jenn to sleep in her bed instead of our living room chair. But I don’t know. All I know is having these three as a whole really changed myself, and it is one of the many reasons I liked the number 3. Though we are all different (I am sure the girls could write even more paragraphs about the differences and similarities they see in each other) the one solidifying bond between us is that we all are good people and we all have a lot of love. That was the thing, we had this unconditional love and support for one another.
Lauren lives in Boston now, where she hosts Bachelorette parties with here huge group of friends she met in grad school. She has about five best friends because of her thoughtfulness. She has hilarious stories because she’s not afraid of comedy. She works as a counselor because she cares. That’s my pea in a giant pea pod. My partner in crime. My “yeahyeahyeah” Tugboat we have inside jokes cuz we’re those girls Queen. And one time her sister told me I was her favorite. BAM!
Sarah OWNS A HOUSE at age 25 in Arizona. She has a crazy dog and nice car and a job and a real adult boyfriend who has kids and everything and she is going to marry him in a crazy Vegas wedding and we all get to have our toenails done for it. She has beautiful clothes to go with her trim figure, red state ideals, and occasionally her mailbox is so full you can’t send letters to her. My opposite buddy. My “girl who makes me cry when I read all the nice things she’s said about me in the past” gal. My rock. Seriously. My rock.
Jenn just moved to New York and is living the dream by working at a museum, assisting in installing crazy pieces of modern art that I don’t understand. Her list of random people she knows is never ending and I’m fairly certain she is so busy she hasn’t slept in over a month. My ideal way to be friend. My sweetheart who can lift heavy things. My igniter.
I still have moments where I feel like, “Wow. How could these girls love me in all my hiccups and insecurities and messy ways and blunt observations and bad habits.” I still don’t know. But I am lucky that 3 people did.
Hey 3! I guess it is lucky.
– One L.
“I always want to fly into Burbank and not LAX. Because a terrorist wouldn’t waste his/her time flying a plane into Burbank.”