I posted a link to an article that I thought was funny the other day. A friend of mine commented several minutes after it was up and told me that she thought it was funny in concept, but very crass in language.

I've often used her as a touchstone, brushing against her to feel whether something I do is morally right. She has tighter values than I do and she is more confident about them than I am about mine. In times in the past, she's gently but firmly expressed her disapproval because she's my friend, and she cares about my well-being. Because of that slap, I have always re-evaluated my view on what I've done. And I have never regretted the readjustment that always came after.

I do this because I admire her. Because she reminds me of the higher standard that I'm striving for. That standard is one reason why I go to church and why I subscribe to the religion that I do. I think, too, I have always had different friends than she has. I probably have more non-Mormon friends than she, although I certainly don't use that as a weight on my side of some Scale of Coolness.

I only say this because I choose to surround myself with people who have different moral standards than I. It makes life more interesting for me. I keep my friendship with her because I find that she's a fascinating person as well. I love her as a friend and as that touchstone.

She's like my personal trainer. I've learned the rules of fitness, and even when I've got dear friends who don't care about exercising, she keeps me in check. They're still my friends, but if I slip in not eating right, she calls me on it.

She's better at determining what is right and what is not in a world of swirling colors. I realized, after her comment about the language of the article in question, that it did offend me slightly but that I still thought it was funny. However, I also realized that whatever I post on here is a reflection of me. I choose not to use particular language; I don't dislike or judge the people I interact with for speaking that language, but if I post an article, it means I would speak that language myself.

So I deleted the post altogether. And I tucked it in my personal bookmarks instead, because I still find it funny and clever. And even though I choose to set specific guidelines for myself, it doesn't mean that I don't struggle with maintaining them.

She's reading this, I'm certain. Thank you, darling. I appreciate you.
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