So, it’s official. “Unfriend” has been named 2009’s word of the year by the New Oxford American Dictionary. Unfriend was defined as a verb that means to remove someone as a “friend” on a social networking site such as Facebook.
I love new words, but this made me wince. It’s so, so….so unfriendly. And sneaky. Because you can unfriend someone without them knowing it. Or so I have been told.
And it made me ponder nicer, gentler prefixes. Positive, nurturing, yet nuanced, like our friendships, in all of their fabulous flavors.
befriend (I do love this this most)
refriend (I love second chances)
cofriend (sharing is a good thing, as in we can share a friend)
prefriend (what you do when you want to be friends, but you aren’t friends just yet)
e-friend (you know who you are)
iFriend (I don’t know if this means a selfish, self-centered friend, or if it means being a friend to yourself, what do you think?)
faux friend (not officially a prefix, and not officially a friend, but useful and not always a bad thing)
dynafriend (the powerhouse of friends)
ecofriend (the one with the Birkenstocks)
I also have other friend categories:
friends who will tell you when you have a booger
friends who you could call at 2 am, if you really, really needed to
friends who forgive you when you forget their birthdays (this is a large group in my life)
friends who have seen you at your worst, and stick around anyway (also a large group)
friends who make you feel smart and pretty and clever, just by being
friends of the road and friends of the heart.
and never to be unfriended.