As you may be aware, my real name is Philip, not Felix. Felix is a nickname that I was given about a dozen years ago. More on that in a minute.
But first, there are a couple of things of which I'm certain:
1. One is lucky to have one great love in their lifetime. I haven't experienced this.
2. One is blessed to have one great best friendship in their lifetime. I'd like to introduce you to mine.
Actually, some of you are already going to know him. Some of you may have grown up with him. Some of you may have even sighed over pictures of him in Tiger Beat!
When we were first introduced, I certainly didn't see the material that would make a friendship to last a lifetime. There were just too many differences. I was 15 years older than him. Starting to work at five years old, he never had a childhood, while I was given one that I never wanted. I was all East Coast sensibilities and he was total California boy. We had a long talk that day and many more in the days that followed and discovered, that actually there were far more similarities than differences.
We have seen each other through the very best and the very worst that life has served us. There is an energy that is kicked up when we are in each others company that is apparently quite extraordinary. A very wise man once said to me, "If you want truly amazing relationships, treat your lovers more like friends and your friends more like lovers." Our friendship has put that theory into action. It was with him that I first learned that a platonic friendship can have romance!
Like any worthwhile relationship we've had a few (actually, very few) fights that were doozies.
The little fucker is fast, let me tell you. It wasn't long afterward that we were cracking up about it and relating the story to friends.
Oh, yeah, about the whole Felix thing. So about 5-6 years before I met Chad, there was a hot minute where painted jeans were the rage. A friend of mine was making and selling them and doing quite well. One day he offered to do a pair for me. I told him that I didn't know what I wanted on them and he said to leave it up to him, he'd come up with the perfect thing for my personality.
I wore 'em a couple of times, people thought they were kinda cool. Shut up. Every once in a blue moon, when I was feeling particularly ridiculous, I'd pull them out and wear them. There was a blue moon one day about 6 weeks after I'd met Chad and I had them on. This was during a period of his life when he felt it was his duty to give everyone he knew a nickname. He saw me, his eyes went wide and he said, "FELIX, THAT'S A GREAT NAME FOR YOU! FELIX! THAT'S YOUR NAME!" It was cute. For about a day. I asked him to stop. Ever the rascally contrarian, (if there's ever something you want him to do - just ask him not to do it) he wouldn't.
I finally reached the point of 'when in Rome' and started calling him Felix right back. So here we are now, Felix and Felix to each other. And somehow I've become an unwitting collector of Felix-inalia. And there's something else too, that I'm not quite sure how to put into words. As time has passed, 'Felix' has come to embody an idea that I try to live up to. It's the idea of my personhood that lives in Chad's mind; the me that he sees. And 'Felix' is much wiser, finer, stronger, kinder and calmer than I ever thought Philip could be.
Today is a very special day in his life and I wanted to go on a little shopping blackout at Tiffany's for him (which is about half of what he deserves) but since that wasn't feasible, I'll just say, "Felix, my Felix, I love you and who, really, would I be without you."
Felix... ...and Me