I ran into one of my oldest shooting buddies today at the grocery store where he works. I had some things for him, so I ran out to my car to grab the bag of goodies I've been driving around with for months. When I got back in the store, I handed him the bag and gave him a big side hug. One of the customers looked over and said, "that's so sweet, you guys are so cute together!"
I was stunned into silence for a moment, then laughed and said, "thanks, I'll be sure to tell his wife." Robbie said, "and I'll be sure to tell her husband."
I realized she thought I was his wife bringing him lunch and I'm flattered she thought we were a cute couple.
And then I started thinking ... whenever I'm with a male shooting buddy, people assume we're a couple. Always. Doesn't matter which one I'm with: John, Mez, Robbie, Mike, any of them.
So then I started thinking (always a dangerous thing), WHY do people think that I'm "with" a male friend? Is it because they can't wrap their heads around the fact that I can be friends with men?
Or is it because there's an easy (but platonic) intimacy with someone you spend a lot of time with, especially when the time you're spending with them involves deadly weapons? I spend a lot of time with my friends at the range watching them carefully, and vice versa. You get into a rhythm of anticipating what they're going to do or what they're going to need. Shooting can be a very collaborative thing, and I think after spending countless hours and rounds down range that intimacy naturally develops.
All of my shooting buddies pre-date my marriage, so I'm thankful that I have a husband who is not at all bothered by this.
Have you noticed this? Have you and a shooting buddy ever been mistaken for a couple? Why do you think that is?