There is nothing so gloriously awkward as when one man develops a platonic crush on another man.
Yes, sometimes envy and admiration of a cool, successful, handsome, man crosses that line – that line where one is no longer celebrating mere friendship, but something deeper and profoundly unnerving. The weaker man begins to worship and idolize the greater man, much like a 13-year old middle-school girl might long for Corey Haim.
I have had my allotment of man-crushes over the years, but none greater than for a gentleman named John Hermanson, a local musician of some repute (Alva Star: hazy power-pop, Storyhill: plaintive acoustic duo, and Olympic Hopefuls: ripping indie-pop).
John and I are merely “just friends” now, but that change has not repressed the shamefully awkward memories I have of my former man-crush towards him. When Welmore Mile recruited John to produce our first album it was done out of sheer platonic man-lust for his talents, his perfect teeth, and his soulful eyes. During the first few days in the studio, his decrees went unchallenged. He could have suggested that we replace my vocal tracks with the brayings of a donkey with a broken knee, and I would have vigorously nodded my head in agreement. I also burned countless calories in hyperactive attempts to make Hermanson laugh, for in platonic man-crushes, making your crush laugh is the equivalent to a 4-hour makeout session.
There was also one unspeakable moment in the studio where our eyes met meaningfully, and we did what felt only natural at the time. We followed the trail of this man-crush to its inevitable conclusion, and pledged to never speak of it to anybody. There’s probably a sound-recording of it somewhere on his hard drive. We also ate pancakes and I told him all my secrets.
Things between Hermanson and I are back to normal now. We worked together long enough for the crush to wear off and for some good ol’ hatred to seep in. We even had a healthy knife-fight back in ’03 where I killed his baby. It’s much healthier this way, and we may work together again in the future. Like the 13-year old girl who grows up and realizes that Corey Haim is probably a child molester or something, I have moved on from my man-crush on John Hermanson. I’m too old too be bothered with stuff like that.
Besides, I like Donald Sutherland now.