Culture + Friendship


    When I was in 7th grade, my best friend knew all the words to Blue's Traveller's hit song, "Hook". If you know the song, you can see how a 7th grader living in the mid 90's could be impressed by this feat.

  When I discovered that Lindsey also owned the CD  (yes, I did just date myself there) of "FOUR" (Blue's Traveller's breakout album), I knew we would be besties.

     She and I would lay on her full size bed and replay the song over and over again.  Lindsey would sing the words perfectly each time as I marveled. Truth be told,  I was grateful that I had friend who didn't mind playing Blue's Traveller over and over again. Together, we pinky swore to remain their loyal fans forever... 

     Music has a magical way of connecting us to others. When children/ middle school age students begin to identify their musical tastes, they have a tendency to align themselves with other musically like-minded peers. I can still remember when I met a girl at camp who was listening to Lisa Loeb on her Discman. I distintcly remember saying to her, "Oh my god! Lisa Loeb! We should be friends!"  

  Even as an adult, looking to make new friends in a new neighborhood, I am always looking out for a person who likes the same music as me. Anyone who loves Motown, knows who Better than Ezra is , or is not ashamed to admit that they have wept at a U2 concert, will be probably find a friend in me.

    There is no doubt in anyone's mind that music influences us. So, when you come across someone else who is influenced by the same lyrics and melodies as you - you take notice. "Oh? You like this music too? Could you be my person?"

  Music helps us find each other. 

  Music also give us good reason to get together.

  I have watched my mother and her friends come alive on wedding dance floors when one of their old favorites is played. Nobody boogies likes Mrs. P boogies - it just takes the right song.  The music not only inspires her little posse to kick off their heels and let loose, but it intrinsically sets them apart as a group. As if to say, "This is our song from our time and we belong to each other."

      Just last night, my eight old led a choir of her friends in a karaoke of Taylor Swift's "Shake it Off". They danced and sang the song with gusto. This wasn't just "play" . This was making "music" together. Every once in while, when I get fed up hearing that karaoke machine blast through my home, I have to remind myself, "She has so much fun singing with her friends. I will hold off in murdering this machine just a while longer..."

    Bottom line: Music helps us find each other and gives us good reason to get together.


So, turn up your music.

You never know who you might find singing along with you.


Your friend,


*For more on music and friendship, listen to Episode 29 of Friending Podcast: THE SOUNDTRACK OF FRIENDSHIP.


 Noelle is a  speaker, podcaster, and self proclaimed: Friendtor(Friend +Mentor = Friendtor).  She is the podcast producer/host for Friending Podcast and is a regular co-host for the podcast, Slices of Life. She lives in North Jersey with her hot husband and two wild children. She is a big fan of Constant Comment Tea, the Oscars, and Lesley Knope.

      Noelle is passionate about helping women find grow in their calling and encourage one another to do the same through the art of friendship.   For more random facts on Noelle you can click here or stalk her on Instagram.






Who are you voting for?

     This question is a hot button between friends. The pressure from both sides is heavy. With social media serving as a platform for Americans to exercise their right to free speech, one can feel the stress of simply catching up on their Facebook newsfeed. I, for one, have to take an antacid every time I stumble upon a Facebook political fight between two friends.  

      There was one time where I read a friend comment another mutual friend's post, "YOU are what is wrong with America!" I shuddered.

   Really? I scratched my head and thought back of all the times these two friends have shared together - weddings... births of each other's children.. funerals of each other's family members... birthdays... job promotions... miscarriages.. marital issues... moving into new homes... etc.

    The other friend responded to the comment with equal eloquence, "No, YOU are what is wrong with America!" This back and forth political cat fight continued for 18 more comments. I could feel the ulcer growing inside the pit of my stomach. 

    This election has boldened the line that divides Americans on very crucial issues. This is not trite nor irrelevant to our future and I would never want to come across as if I were saying, "What's the big deal?". It's a big freakin' deal. So, please, let's vote for our candidate with gusto but also with the same passionate resolve that:



  •     Neither Trump nor Clinton will be available to give you a lift to work when your car breaks down.
  •     When you found out your mom has breast cancer and you need someone to watch you kids so you can privately fall apart in your bedroom, these two candidates will not be the people you will call.
  •   When your boss promotes you and  you want to  celebrate your hard work recognized, it won't be Hillary or Donald toasting your success.

    It will be your friends who show up.

  It's our friends who make America a great place to live - the way we care for each other and link our lives to one another - regardless of what we believe or how we vote... this is the beauty of our nation. This is America. We have the right to disagree and to vocalize our beliefs and yet we can live together and love each other despite the differences.

   Name calling, posting angry memes, or unfriending folks from FB  is not what friends do.  Declaring others faithless or unpatriotic because of their choice of candidate is counterproductive to the mission of love.  Is it possible that no matter who comes in office, we can shape our nation's future by our relentless devotion to each other? I just wonder.

    Don't forget who you are friends are this election. Don't cut them out or cut them down because they are Hillary supporters or Trump fans. Let your voice be loud and your love be louder. On Wednesday, you just may need them... or they may need you....

Choose to make your arms ready and opened wide.

Your friend,