How did you meet each other?
Ayi: Around 2017, I was in year 1, and Preye was doing his pre-degree. I can remember exactly what he was wearing - jeans, a flannel shirt, and a cap. Billy, a mutual friend, introduced us.
Shout out to Billy for bringing you two together. So what was the moment you knew you had become close friends?
Preye: We were regular friends, but we really got close during the lockdown. We hung out a lot, and I found out he was a solid, dependable guy. He has come through so much for me that I feel like I haven't even started repaying all the good things he has done for me. I’ve even met his mum, and his mum loves me. It’s a big deal for me.
Ayi: As he said, we spent much time together during the lockdown, but before that, we hung out quite a bit. So it's just when you're used to someone, you find yourself talking a lot and gravitating towards each other. You feel free to say the weirdest things and talk to them about anything. Our friendship just feels natural like that.
So far, what moment have you had in your friendship that really touched you?
Preye: Disclaimer: I remember the feeling but not the actual event. Okay, so there was a point in time when I could be randomly around Ayi’s place, and regardless of what he was doing, he’ll still find time to fit me in. To be prioritized like that felt good.
Ayi: It’s not a particular moment but rather a chain of events. I struggle with certain health issues, and it’s the little comments Preye makes when we’re together, like “take care of yourself, exercise, and eat healthy.” To me, it shows he genuinely cares about me.
It feels like it’s now subconscious for both of you to care for each other?
Ayi: Yeah, something like that.
Preye: It’s almost spiritual, lol.
We’re all adults now. Do you feel like the friendships you have formed now as an adult are more valuable than the ones you formed as a child?
Ayi: Hmm, yes, I think so because friendships you make as a child were mostly made because of proximity. You made friends with people around you, people your parents know and so on. Once you’re an adult, you tend to make friends with people who share similar interests with you and people you actually like. Adult friendships are more intentional because, honestly, every relationship is transactional. It just makes sense to befriend people who have something to offer.
Preye: Yeah, I hold pretty much the same view. I feel childhood friendships were more random. They just happened, although we still had friends we naturally gravitated towards. I think time is also important in childhood friendships, as in how long you’ve known each other. While in adult friendships, intensity and substance are more important. And for me, substance always trumps time.
Let’s backtrack a little to where Ayi mentioned every relationship is transactional. Preye, do you agree with him?
Ayi: Feel free, my guy. Be honest.
Preye: He always says it, and I’ve tried to see it that way. On a base level, he’s correct. Humans do nothing without intent, whether we are conscious of it or not. Obviously, the fact that the relationship exists, whether platonic or romantic, proves there’s a benefit being gained.
Ayi: So, bottom line, you agree, and I have sense.
Preye: Allegedly, yes.
Interesting. How do you manage friendships as an adult now?
Ayi: I feel like everything is down to priorities. Despite how busy you are, if you make an effort to keep in touch with your friends, it goes a long way. Also, if you occasionally go out of your way to help them, it just shows this person thinks of me and has my best interest at heart. You don't always have to put their needs ahead of yours, but at least consider the other person’s needs. Just the act of consideration is enough. It’s all a matter of balancing your life and still regarding your friends as a priority.
Preye: Adult friendships require a certain level of mutual understanding. We are all living life at different paces, and so much happens out of our control. I think the space and grace we give people keep us afloat. That’s why I recently started my Snapchat career. Lol, but for real, I send streaks to my friends as proof of life and a way to keep at least some communication going. Snap streaks are just sharing quick pictures of your daily life. There’s hardly any packaging to impress anyone, like its Instagram. It’s a nice way to keep up.
Now I’m curious. Do you and Ayi share snap streaks, and how long is it?
Preye: It’s 72. It would have been longer, but it broke off at some point when I lost my phone.
What’s something you really love about each other?
Ayi: I like how open-minded he is. With him, there’s very little judgement. We have similar interests to a certain level, such as music and art. We have a good time sharing ideas. We’ve discussed 3 or 4 businesses that we’ve ended up not starting. Almost 4 or 5 magazines we’ve ended up not creating.
Who knows, your investor might read this interview and offer you funding.
Ayi: Yes, yes, please help our lives. Support a black business.
Preye, how about you? What do you love about Ayi?
Preye: I love how much our music tastes sync. He’s so articulate and thinks very clearly. He really listens to me and is very considerate of me. I love that he loves Ginger tea the way I do.
Ginger tea? I see that you’re men of culture. Is there something you’ve wanted to confess to each other or tell each other?
Preye: Is it something deep or shallow?
It could be anything. Whatever comes to mind, just go with it.
Ayi: Hmmmm. Probably that he’s one of the reasons I want to have lots of money so we can bring all our ideas to life.
Preye: I just want to tell him that we’re making it out of the trenches together.
I’m definitely rooting for you two to make it. Rate your friendship on a scale of 1-10.
Preye: 8/10, and it’s because we don’t have the money we want yet. Once money enters, it will become 10/10. I want to be able to say, “Guy, come and meet me in Miami”, without thinking too much or just randomly dash my guy $5M.
Ayi: I’ll say 7.5 or 8 too. The only thing to add to make it better is just money. We’re doing great already, so proper funds will be the icing on the cake.