The Friend Pot: A Re-Conceptualisation of Companion-Concubine Relations

Liam Travers

Editors: Christie van Tinteren and Molly Blackall


As reigning title-holder of Europe’s Most Friendzonable Boy – Kenya’s Kiema Kotecha dominates on the world stage – the dynamics of this virtual space occupies a lot/all of my non-academic pondering. In an attempt to maximise topic exploration time, I’ve begun thinking about this perverse conceptualisation with my little LSE hat on. It is as a result of this that I now, with only a little pride, present The Friend Pot theory.

Disclaimer: the following metaphor is uniquely shit and was written by a chap too far down the rabbit hole. If you doubt your capability to track such a simultaneously weak and tenuous trope then I;

  1. don’t blame you – this article is total trite and

  2. suggest you divert your eyes before we roll up and have a puff on this truth joint

Right then.


You know the bit in Tenacious D when Jack Black seamlessly dodges and deactivates about 50 lasers using only his knob? Yeah, that’s not a terrible representation of the downright stickiness of today’s topic. Without sensational agility – in multiple arenas – the game’s up.

Let’s talk 2-D. The typical visualisation of the friendzone is a couple of concentric circles. We’ve got lover in the centre, our boy enveloping it, then hug-in-a-club, nod-swapper, acquaintance and stranger in declining order of perceived hand-holding and/or kissing possibilities.

This is a fundamentally destructive theorisation. It’s rigid; it’s unhelpful; it’s boring.

He’s Krishnan Guru-Murthy and je suis Tarantino. His butt = shut down. It’s gonna get all social darwinian in here. You ready?

My thesis: when individuals disregard any notion of romance with a partner based on ‘not-ruining’ their existing friendship, they engage in a poorly chosen performance of artificial selection (here begins the metaphor). Indeed, my convenience sample has revealed that the most abiding affinities seem to stem from a strong foundation of friendship. This also holds true in my highly limited, albeit keenly felt, experience.

I understand that we all crave that moment in Zoo. Eyes meet across le room. She’s got a pitcher, obviously a capt-ulet. He reckons they’re going to monta-screw. We’ve got big Philly C on the speakers; it’s In The Air Tonight. There’s a sea of people in their way but this geezer’s named Moses. Fast-forward three years and wedding bells chime all around the library.

You: Hey Liam, this is cool but aren’t we making life hard for ourselves?

Liam: Yes.

The conversion of stranger to sweetheart is a far more convoluted route than habib to habibi. That is not to say it isn’t possible – the school’s Instagram feed is testament to that – but simply that y’all are missing out. If we decide to roll the dice of love with existing players, the chance of si/ex increases. The odds of getting lucky rise.

Friend Pot: Hi, can I come in?

Liam: Yes.

Enter the friend pot…


The Friend Pot: Where current friendships grow and develop.

The Prospect Pot: Where we get our courtship on.

We can think of these pots as different biomes. The climatic conditions are very much separate, and the pressures regular versus romanzesco (that’s italian for romantic). Within the Friend Pot, the winds of love never rage, and the temperature rarely gets us hot and heavy. But, hello, what might happen if we take a cutting and plop the former into the latter. Could the continuous flirtquake of the Prospect Pot shake a couple of feelings out?

Compelling evidence points to the conclusion of possibly. Hey, if things start to develop then add some fertiliser (sorry) and keep cultivating what you’ve got. If you can’t get it up, and things start wilting, switch the biomes back. You’d hope both parties are of a certain emotional maturity that all would not be lost but if things seem unreconcilable then congratulations, you’ve dodged a total weed. Whilst things weren’t rosy, at least we can separate the petal from the prick. Should have spotted it, rookie stuff.

For me, c’est a nailed-on win-win. If love’s a game, then this one’s got a big-old positive sum outcome. It’s basically Goldenballs on dope(amine). Split or Steal. Rid yourself of the rot or find the ripe one for you (sorry, again).

Parking all the claptrap for a moment, what I’ve been trying to say for the past circa 800 words is that as by-product of its discourse, the way the Friendzone School of Thought separates characteristics of friendship and romance is ill-natured. Whilst I appreciate that such a statement may inadvertedly support the twattiness of those pesky ‘nice guys’ please be aware that; a. this is only a side-effect of my ineloquence and b. I am a happily-taken individual with no desire for this to be read as propaganda in support of my own perceived romantic injusti.

Para concluir, some key ingredients for the recipe of a fulfilling partnership can be found within friendships. The bastard friendzone sidles in and chooses to somewhat blight the clarity of this statement. Instead, it holds down the foolish notion that an unco is better placed to unglove - @Morrissey - a lonely hand. Ladies and gents let’s hold up on these whirlwind Troy/Gabz vibes and get our heads in the game.