"Friendship is perhaps the single most intense preoccupation and passion of my life. In fact it is probably the only activity concerning which I would claim real expertise and natural talent. I have four friends of more than thirty years, two of thirty-five years?they are vital not relics...Women do this so much more passionately and persistantly that when I think about how grateful I am for belonging to my own sex, what I prize most is the freedom the society gives women to develop relatedness and friendship [with each other]....
"I once thought of giving workshops to men, to teach them about friendship; how to gossip; how to write thank you notes, how to cry, of course; how to exchange clothes and secrets; how to send little gifts, and touch each other lightly and sweetly in passing."
1. Barbara Myerhoff, Letter to Ron, 5 February 1980, Academic/Friendship Correspondence, Box 55, Barbara Myerhoff Papers, U of Southern California.