I have a group of people that I can only call my frenemies. The Devil’s one although, that’s…in flux, for a variety of reasons.

Another is the guy in this entry. I sued him and won(ish) – we settled but mainly on my terms.

For the next seven years or so, we became friendly(ish).

I’d stop by over every few months or so and trade stories with him over coffee. We had our flareups but he knew what I was capable of and I knew the same for him.  So, we were kinda like Russia and the US; in a polite, Cold War type of existence.

He ended up retiring and the guy that took over and I went almost started a hot war over something recently. But a mutual party stepped in yesterday morning.

Friend: You should meet him. He wants to talk.
Me: Sorry you’re in the middle of this. Let’s see where this goes.

I don’t like meeting people in their environment. It gives them too much advantage. But he needed me more than I needed him so off I went.

Him: What can we do to work this out? My guys mean well.
Me: They mean well to you, because you pay them. They don’t mean s__t to me. Here’s what I want…
Him: (after) I can do that. (takes out papers) Now, here’s what I want…
Me: (after) I can do that. (thinking) I’m starting to like you. Your predecessor was a frenemy of mine and I miss having coffee with him. Are you down to have a fella like me as a frenemy?
Him: (laughs) I’d love it. (holds out hand)
Me: (takes it) I’ll give you my official response on Friday but I’ll tell you now that I’ll let you do this thing. Ask your predecessor, my word is all you need.
Him: Good. You know my daughter’s a lawyer too? I’m surrounded by them.
Me:  So am I. Hell-of-a-thing. That means we’ll continue to be polite to each other, yeah? Lawsuits are expensive. Coffee’s cheaper. I’ll come by in a month with the latter. You can tell me then how you take it.

I find that the people that give me trouble make me better at what I do. Lincoln was known to surround himself with rivals. I don’t go that far.

But I do collect valuable people. His predecessor was one, as is he.

It’s better to have valuable open adversaries than useless disloyal friends.

Location: earlier today, a new office
Mood: dull and vicious
Music: feel it really…sinking in

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