Two days ago at 4am, My Friend Michelle was dropping her dog out of her window, and then climbing out after it. Her house was on fire. Everyone's okay, but the house is not. Which is important, because she's part of a circle I consider to have rather moved out of friendship into family. "My Friend Michelle" is how I think of her. Literally. She's got three names. Obviously, that's not her real name. But in my head, it's always "My Friend Michelle". If I'm talking about her to someone, it's "My Friend Michelle..."
We met in what may be the worst HTML class ever at Framingham State College, and just kind of became friends. She's wicked smart, and is the only person I've ever heard use "centipedal force" while describing an auto accident she had. My jaw clanged open, because face it, how many times do you hear someone do that? She saw that and said "Well centrifugal force is such bullshit!" I think at that point, I would have jumped in front of bullet for her. I'm a science geek, other science geeks are cool.
We would hang out and have the coolest conversations about science, politics, books, british comedies, whatever. She introduced me to a lot of music I'd have not listened to otherwise, and gave me a banner from the last Macworld in Boston before it moved to the Javits. She's really thoughtful that way. She went to London because she had the chance to go, and why wouldn't you? She's one of the, if not the coolest person I met while I lived in Massachusetts, and that time would have had a lot more suck without her.
I'm real glad she's didn't get hurt, and as soon as I post this, I'm going to get her a Target gift card so that she can go and get some stuff to help make the next few days a little easier. She'll insist I didn't have to, and technically that's right, but come on, really, like I'm not going to help. Pfft.
So this year, what I have to be thankful for is that My Friend Michelle is alive, uninjured, and safe, even her house isn't.