Why Can't We Be Friends?

Ben Hoskins

Friends don't let friends tell friends the truth.

Welcome to the Mack Brown Texas Football call-in show. Your home for Mack Brown Texas Football. I'm Craig Way, your host.

Coach, a tough Saturday against Oklahoma. Sometimes the breaks just don't go your way.

Well, you're so right, Craig. And I feel really badly for the kids, the coaches, and for myself, Mack Brown Texas Football. Because when we have to perform to expectations set by others, it can be really unfair. Things like "winning" or "not losing by six touchdowns to Oklahoma again" or "attempting to compete at all." Who sets those arbitrary standards? Is this even America anymore?

And when things don't go the way you want them to go in the game of Mack Brown Texas Football, you really find out who your friends are. The world can't be divided between who is, and who is not, your friend. It's that simple. A lot of negativity out there.

And this week, why bother to talk about the game when it's clear that it just wasn't going to be your day in the new Big 12? So we're going to take general questions for Coach Brown this week. Ask him anything. But please, no football.

Ted in Plano, you're on with Coach Mack Brown....

Coach, I don't know what to do. My boss called me into his office for my annual performance review. He said my sales have been lagging, I've been late on my weekly reports, and I call in sick every Monday and Friday. He's fed up.

Whoa, there. Ted, you need to work for a friend. He's telling you mean things. Friends don't do that.

Well, I was looking more for advice on how to get back on track.

Ted, are you having fun?

Well, I was having fun. But now it doesn't feel fun.

That's because you're listening to people that aren't your friend. Go back to when it was fun. If the company crashes, that'll show 'em for not supporting you. And ask for a raise and a guaranteed contract until 2020.

Alice in Navasota, you're on with Coach Mack Brown...

Coach, thanks so much for taking my call. I'm upset. I just went to an oncologist, he performed some tests, and he tells me I may have cancer. He says its early and treatable and he's confident it can be swiftly resolved because we have all the resources required, but how should I talk about this with my fam-

Gotta interrupt. That man is not your friend.

What? I'm sorry.

That former friend with the stethoscope and white coat. That's a horrible thing to say someone. That they're sick. What a negative, hurtful thing to say.

He's a doctor.

Alice, listen, because this is very important: You cannot let negative people into your life. Get some new friends.

Well, he's not my friend per se, he's a professional who...

EVERYONE IS YOUR FRIEND! UNTIL THEY SAY BAD THINGS. THEN THEY ARE NOT. THE WORLD IS DIVIDED BETWEEN FRIENDS AND NOT-FRIENDS. NEXT CALLER PLEASE.

Little Katy in Sugarland, you're on with Coach Brown...

Coach Brown, I am 10 years old! My name is Katy!

Of course, Katy, what a ray of sunshine. What's your question for ol' Coach?

I am on a team! I am pretty good, I think! But my coach said he thinks I can be better. He gives me advice and loaned me a Mia Hamm instructional video.

He's not your friend. Quit the team.

Oh no!

Yes. This man is not your friend. Katy, do you know what it means when someone doesn't want to be your friend?

(sobs) Yes.

He hates you, Katy.

Okay.

Do you understand why he hates you? Because he wants you to improve.

Alright.

Good. Katy, you'll always be my friend.

Okay.

But no more soccer for you.

Okay.

Katy - who is your friend?

Mack Brown Texas Football.

That's right.

Coach, we have Bob in Conroe. Bob, you're on...

Coach Brown, I'm the father of a 17 year old boy. He dropped out school, he's been stealing from us, I don't like his friends that he insists on clinging to. I think it's drugs. I want to intervene and do what's right. This is a good boy at his core. I think if we can get him to identify his own behavior and problems, we can all work through this together.

Bob, no wonder your boy is having trouble with such a negative father.

Excuse me?

Sigh. Oh, Bob. Just listen to you. He dropped out of this. He stole that. Drugs. So negative. Not friendly.

I love my son. But he has to confront his behaviors. He has to know the truth.

THE TRUTH IS MEAN, BOB. LIES ARE SOFT AND SMELL OF CINNABONS. NEXT CALLER PLEASE.

Coach, our final caller. It's Cary Ann, from Austin.

Hi Coach!

Hi Cary Ann!

Coach, I just failed my mid-term.

What did you score?

13%.

13%? What is that? 2 out of 15?

Exactly. And each question had 12 different options.

According to Craig's calculations, if you just chose randomly and knew absolutely nothing at all, probability says that you'd score about 2 out of 15?

Yes. I guess that's right.

Hmm. Sound familiar. Hey, that's really good!

Really?

Absolutely. You're wonderful. I'm sending you a big supportive hug. I'm your friend.

My professor says it's a F. He's failing me.

He's not your friend.

No, he's a professor.

Oh, Cary Ann. Bless your heart. All relationships in the universe are built on friendship. A person's role and what they're actually paid to do is not relevant. You're not failing him. You did your best.

Truth be told, that's not my best. I didn't study. I was on 6th Street and -

Shhhh, Cary Ann. You're buying into his game. The blame game.

Thanks, Mack Brown Texas Football. I will carry my 2 of 15 with pride.

There's no other way, sweetie.

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