Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Larry Conners and His Good Friend Julius

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Larry Conners and His Good Friend Julius

Article excerpt

I HAVE a friend. We will call him Julius.

We happen to be in the same profession; he's very successful in his field, and I can hold my own, but sometimes I admit I feel shallow beside him.

My friend can speak a couple of languages, conversing with just the right inflection. He dabbles in a couple of other languages. Me? I speak English and Texan, which are not really the same but don't qualify as separate languages.

My friend is a published author. We're not talking about making the New York Times best-seller list, but his works have been well received. I have copies, which he graciously autographed.

He has musical abilities. He can play the piano and even lead an orchestra, which he has done with grace, style and tempo. In my earlier years, I sawed on a violin much to the pain of anyone within hearing distance. He can sing with a rich, baritone voice; the best I can do is mimic any honky-tonk country song with just the right accent.

My friend is a man at home in the kitchen. He doesn't just cook simple meals; he delights in perfecting a standing rib roast or beef tenderloin, preparing seven-course offerings. Me? I can fry bologna with cheese on top and microwave popcorn.

Sometimes I even admire my friend's temper. Where I hide my feelings and silently suffer through some distress, he thunders like an avalanche. Pity anyone caught in the path.

You probably have a friend like mine. A friend who possesses certain abilities, traits, talents - even a style you do not have.

Sometimes, when you and your friend are at certain gatherings, perhaps you feel like the ugly duckling next to the swan. Your friend gets all the attention, praise and laughs while you fade into the background.

It might appear strange that we make such friends, knowing that we are not their equal in many ways, but, in truth, that might even strengthen your relationship. Francis Bacon wrote: There is little friendship in the world, and least of all between equals.

Mutt and Jeff combinations exist in all areas of life regardless of age, gender, education or vocation. This is true even in Holywood where no one likes to be second banana.

You want an example? …

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