A Test Of Our Friendship

I’m interested in making some new friends, so if you would like to be considered for this illustrious honor please complete the following screening questionnaire and promptly return it to me. You should expect to hear results within 4 – 6 weeks; due to the anticipated overwhelming number of responses only those who merit further consideration should expect a reply. If you make it to Round 2, remember to bring your money order and emergency contact information.

Who are you supporting in the upcoming presidential election?

  1. Hillary Clinton
  2. Donald Trump
  3. Bernie Sanders
  4. Jill Stein
  5. Gary Johnson
  6. Planning to write-in for “The Estimable John Branning” because you want your vote to count for something.

Which of the following toppings do you prefer on your pizza?

  1. Pepperoni
  2. Banana peppers
  3. Extra cheese
  4. Whatever you like is fine with me, John – and no, I insist you take the last slice.

On a warm summer’s day, nothing is more refreshing than:

  1. An ice-cold IPA from one of Maine’s award-winning craft breweries, served in a chilled pint glass and accompanied by a bowl of that Asian snack mix with the wasabi peas in it.
  2. The satisfaction derived from bringing my new friend John another ice-cold IPA and refilling that bowl of Asian snack mix.
  3. #2 above, but after removing the strangely-shaped white cracker-like things with the black stripes in them because maybe that’s seaweed?

My idea of showing a friend a good time includes:

  1. Doing whatever he wants to do.
  2. Not doing things he doesn’t want to do.
  3. Nos. 1 & 2.
  4. Nos. 1 & 2 plus bringing over cold IPAs and Asian snack mix without being asked.

Friendship is:

  1. A way to explore mutual interests with another person.
  2. A one-way street, of which I should be on the giving end and expect little in return.
  3. An honor bestowed upon me by someone (initials “JB”) who flatters by allowing others to bask in his reflected glory.
  4. All of the above plus readiness to pick up the check.

Fill in the blank: “I would take ______ for you.”

  1. a bullet
  2. the rap
  3. your suit pants to the dry cleaner
  4. it on the chin
  5. this survey

BONUS ESSAY: In precisely twelve words, describe why you deserve to have the honor of my friendship bestowed upon you. Please include the words “This,” “would,” “literally,” “be,” “the,” “greatest,” “thing,” “that,” “could,” “happen,” “to” and “me” in your response:

_____   _____   _____   _____   _____   _____   _____   _____   _____   _____   _____   _____!!!

By submitting your entry, you are agreeing to the following Terms and Conditions:

  • I am licensed to drive and carry my own insurance.
  • I have a high-def (or, even better, 4K) television with a minimum screen size of 60”, measured diagonally, and subscribe to all the premium cable channels.
  • There is always Gifford’s ice cream in my freezer.
  • I will not bother you with unnecessary texts or tag you in any Facebook posts.
  • If it will improve my chances of becoming your friend, you are welcome to use my boat any time.

Thanks for your entry and good luck!

John Branning

About John Branning

Besides what I contribute here, you can also ignore some of my earlier posts by not visiting my website, www.FactsOptional.com, as well as by not downloading a copy of my e-book “Selfie-Facing: Analog Musings in a Digital World,” which made the list of "The Best Self-Published Books of 2016" as seen on the Huffington Post.