My freshman year at UMASS, I befriended a girl on our floor and her boyfriend, Eric, who visited so much, he practically lived on the floor…
…Fast forward to senior year – we all had moved off campus but I still waved to them whenever I saw them around school. My friend Katie invited me out one night with one of her coworkers from Old Navy…who happened to be Eric. Random! Eric stays in our circle of friends, and moves to Waltham, eventually joined by his new girlfriend Jill (another UMASS student). Keep this story in mind as we move forward to 2006…
…2006 – My Jazzercise instructor Melyssa (stop laughing, it’s actually an intense aerobic program!) introduces me to a classmate, another NY expat named Colleen. We become friends, and after some time both quit Jazzercise and join the local WorkOut World. We start taking Zumba classes. I randomly bump into Jill (SEE: the story about Eric above), who also goes to the same gym. Jill mentions she goes to the Sunday Zumba classes (Colleen and I go to the one on Monday nights).
…I move to Brockton and go to a different WorkOut World…
…Colleen gets married in June 2008 and goes on her honeymoon…
…I see an article in the NY Times about the recent popularity of Zumba and email it to both girls. In the email, I also welcome Colleen back from her recent honeymoon.
Jill responds to me: “Does Colleen go to WorkOut World in Waltham?”
[During this exchange, Colleen emails me to tell me she delayed her birthday dinner one night to Tuesday to go to Zumba on Monday.]
Jill: “I know her! She stands next to me in class! We talk all the time! We were just talking about how she came back from her honeymoon, and how she is going out for birthday a day late so she can go to Zumba!”
Wow. Too funny.
The point here?
- Always think of what we all have in common, rather than what our differences are.
- Network, network, network.
- Don’t be afraid to let random friends from different points in your life mingle.
- Connect friends who have never met but who have something-anything!-in common. (Also a good tip when introducing people who don’t know each other – tell both about something they have in common so they can connect much easier than through typical small talk which can easily fall flat.)
What next, finding out my old roommate works with two other former UMASS floormates of mine? Oh wait…