I'm Way Too Close With My BFF And I Don't Care Because It's Brilliant
The Debrief: We make each other breakfast, rub tanning oil into the hard to reach parts and share a bed. Why does everyone think we're lesbia- oh. Fair enough.
Waking up every morning and gazing into the eyes of your loved one, is what most people would class as the perfect relationship, unless of course it’s your best mate and you’re in this compromising situation due to a lack of somewhere to live.
My friend Gina and I share an office, a desk, a flat, a bedroom… and a bed.
However, contrary to popular belief (my parents) my best friend and I are not lesbians. (I’m pretty sure we’re not anyways. This one time we were dancing with Cara Delevingne and she was definitely hitting on my BFF, so I felt the urge to mark my territory by grabbing Gina and yelling ‘PASH ME NOW’ which didn’t go down so well)
Other than the fact we do not have sex, there are literally no boundaries.
And how did I become too close to my best friend? Well, once we had flown the government’s nest of student loans in Leeds, we both came to London with a heart full of ambition and a bank account full of bugger all, in order to break into advertising. The thing about advertising is, you have a copywriter (moi) and a creative (Gina) who work together as partners. Nonsexual partners.
Our job involves a lot of pitching and presenting to clients. It’s a bit like watching Ant & Dec on SMTV, only we’re selling protein shakes and oak furniture and there’s no Wonky Donky. But outside of the office, our social lives are equally joined at the (drunk and staggering around Soho) hip.
If someone who knows us both sees me out by myself they say, ‘Where’s the other one?’ or ‘How can you survive without your other half?’, and I reply as thus, ‘No I’m not bloody ok, I haven’t seen Gina in like 5 minutes. I think she’s dead, or worse has a new best friend. BRB I need to find her.’
I must also add in here that she’s saved in my phone as ‘The Wife’, which is a much more accurate description. The term, ‘Best Friend’ just feels like a bit of a joke. Best friends share tampons and secrets. Gina and I share a job contract and a duvet.
Why? Well, to cut a long story short, one of our bosses at one of our many internships, took pity on our somewhat uncomfortable and sometimes potentially lethal couch surfing with crazy Europeans. He told us that ‘his mate owed him a favour so we could probably kip in his storeroom for a few nights for minimal rent…’
That was a year and a half ago.
So, other than the obvious living/sleeping arrangement - which let’s face it is definitely too close and quite frankly bizarre (but London rent is like £40,000 a week - or so I'm told/have imagined) - what are the signs that you’re potentially too close to your BFF? Check out the signs and if any of them match, it’s time to give it some space and maybe start hanging out with your other friends for an evening. Or, like, going for a coffee on your own.
We tend to accidentally share knickers and socks. You see, we don’t have a washing machine, so if the weekend comes and goes without a trip to the laundrette, it’s slim pickings in the undies drawer. Our conversations on our daily commute can go from how we’re going to pitch irreverent strategic thinking to a client, to whether we have time to hand wash some pants in the bath so that we’re not going commando for the rest of the week.
Our wardrobes have merged into one big pile. Ironically, our storeroom bedroom has no storage and no beds, but our lovely landlord took us to IKEA and bought us a futon, three pandas and a yellow moon lamp. He also made some shelves for our stuff.
We had good intentions to begin with, but now we just tend to lob everything, everywhere. I can’t even remember if half the stuff is hers or mine. Our co-workers will say, ‘Wasn’t Gina wearing that yesterday?’… ‘Jenny has one of those…’ and so on and so forth until we might as well just walk around inside the same sweater, completely conjoined.
Gina has a tendency to refer to her pre-waxed lady garden as her ‘70’s bush’, pronouncing it ‘ma barshh’ as she bandies herself about the bedroom in ridiculously small underwear, or nothing. I’m somewhat prude and this bush bandying ritual makes me feel slightly on edge.
NB: our bedroom that we share is approx. 5 metres x 3 metres, so there ain’t nowhere to hide.
Other ways in which bodily functions bring us that little bit closer, is the fact that I fart in my sleep - which is news to me, for the simple fact that I’m unconscious, but luckily Gina is always on hand to let me know that I was a-trumpin’ in the small hours. Embarrassing and something that your friend doesn’t really need to know about.
I have always shared toothbrushes with people, and I also know other people who do this, so it’s probably not that weird. However, there are some super normal hygienic people out there, who quite rightly think it’s an invasion of oral privacy. Best to check first before they catch you doing it and start crying.
Those two words are the arch nemesis of every girl, and the reason why white panties only look lovely on Rosie Huntington ‘I’ve Never Emitted Bodily Fluids’ Whiteley in those M&S ads. Normally, I’d either bin the offending article, save it for tanning (the poor garment is pretty buggered now anyways) or attempt to clean it, in order to hide the fact that I’m a normal girl with monthly periods. However, you guessed it, we’ve dealt with each other’s ‘mishaps’ too many times to mention so we’ve become accustomed to help scrub each other’s painters and/or decorators out of our bed sheets.
Fake Tan Sessions
The clue is in the title. Many a time has Gina found me starkers, muddy and smelling like a biscuit factory. It sounds weird because it is weird, and nothing gives her more joy than to do the bit I can’t reach, which ranges from the middle of my back, the underneath of my bottom and/ or my armpit-corner-bits. Lesbian porn films have been made from less.
I’m not a vegetarian but I do sacrifice meat from time to time so we can share meals for money-saving purposes (we’re not high flying ad execs yet and did I mention we live in a cupboard?). Meanwhile, over in the veggie corner, Gina has just about come to terms with eating chicken, but she’s still yet to appreciate the delicacy of a steak. Or a massive beefburger.
Another example of the food-sharing issue is when we were given the Christmas menu for the work party a few days back and spent an embarrassing amount of time orchestrating the food so that we could share meals, despite the fact that all of it is paid by the company. It’s gone past the point of making financial sense, and is now just a way of life. Will we do this at our weddings? When we’re 45? Probably.
Oh, and I make her eggs every Saturday morning. I pretend like it’s nothing but I literally turn into Sally Webster from Corrie- desperately trying to please my wo(man) by answering her every whim- ‘Avocado? Runny eggs? Will you love me more if I get the special juice with the bits you like? I’ll poach them to perfection just you wait.’ Just to make sure she never leaves me, y’know.
As much as I’m making it sound like a hardship, we do have a shit load of fun and have capitalised on our ridiculously joint-at-the-hip life by naming ourselves, Ginafer. It’s a lot easier for people to remember- apparently two names was a bit too much.
It makes my heart melt when she’s sleeping, my blood boil when she’s messy, and my eyes fill with tears of adoration when she brings me beans on toast at 3am because I’ve come back from a night out and I’m totally trollied and she just gets me, you know?
So, how close is too close? Well to be honest, our friendship knows no bounds.
PS as I write this, she’s sitting opposite me, lecturing me on the dangers of sleeping with a hot water bottle while I’m drunk in bed. To date, I have burnt my arm (a trip to A&E ensued), my nipple (I went to the doctors) and this morning I have woken up with a big long nasty burn on my bum. I suggested that maybe if she was there to hold me at night, instead of spend quality time with her new boyfriend, then perhaps I wouldn’t have needed the hot water bottle to keep me warm.
Yeah, maybe we are a little too close.
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Follow Jenn and Gina on Twitter: @Ginaferlondon
Picture: Lukasz Wierzbowski
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