Every once in a while, I come across someone who I just know will make an impact on the world. It might be public or personal, but you know it's there waiting to happen.
This week, I've had the distinct pleasure to spend time with two of those people in my life - my friends Jason Roman and Chris Barnes.
I met Jason my sophomore year of college. He hit on me at the Diesel on 59th, across from Bloomingdale's. We went out a couple of times, but it never took. But I am so grateful for that - Jason has been one of my most loyal, constant, and supportive friends. And we have seen each other through a lot, even from a distance. When we first met, I was a college student fraying at the edges, and he was an attractive young man not quite sure what to do with all the talent that lay beneath his model-esque looks.
When Jason first took up acting, he immediately begun to display a focus and passion that I hadn't seen in him before. His whole being opened up - it was like he suddenly had a vocabulary with which to express himself. All of that creativity and sensitivity was suddenly illuminated. It's been one of the most joyous things for me to witness.
He and I got together on Friday evening and had a chance to catch up. It's like food for my soul to talk to him about music or movies or what our futures might bring. Spending time with him makes me feel hopeful and excited for the future - that if I stay focused, work hard, and stay true to myself I can end up where I want to be. Jason is one of those special people who you can look at and just know that he can achieve anything he wants.
Last night, I hung out with my good friend Chris Barnes. He and I met in high school - at the South Carolina Governor's School for the Arts and Humanities. There he was a senior classical saxophonist; I was a freshman ballet dancer. Chris is one of the most talented people I know. Now he is focused on jazz music and tabla (an Indian percussion instrument), and I have to say, when I heard his senior recital at Rutgers in December, I had the chills.
Since we both live in Jersey City met up at our local haunt, White Star. It must have been some kind of theme night, because they were playing every indie rock album from 2004-2005: Postal Service, Muse, Beck, Modest Mouse, Franz Ferdinand. It was total high school nostalgia!
Chris' character is of the highest caliber; he is kind, understanding, loyal. We talk about high school, and it's not just reminiscing - It's a whole exchange of thought...and it's a gift for me to be able to process such important moments in my life with someone who has experienced them as well.
There are few people I've met who are as dedicated to their craft as Chris. That has been such an example to me in so many parts of my life. Chris will succeed at anything he chooses to focus on, of that I'm absolutely sure.
I am so blessed to have so many people like Chris and Jason in my life. Although, I admit it's really difficult to do them any justice in words alone.