Last year I needed a small favor. There was something I urgently needed to handle, and to do it most effectively I had to have help.
It came up last minute so I asked two people, hoping one of them would be able to do it.
Person A: one of my mommy acquaintances, we'd known each other about five years. Had kids around the same age and in some of the same activities. Sometimes we saw each other socially. We talked all the time whenever we were together waiting for our kids at an activity or at the playground. It was always friendly, we'd had more than a few laughs together and share similar outlooks on many things.
Person B: one of my mommy acquaintances, we'd known each other about 9 months. Had kids around the same age and in some of the same activities. Our kids had gotten together a few times.
I was surprised at the result. Person A casually blew me off. Person B couldn't do it, but expressed real regret and hoped I'd make out okay.
To be clear, what I needed to handle was a bit of a deal for me, but the help I needed was miniscule. It wouldn't have put either of them out of their way in terms of money, time, gas, or labor.
I learned that day that despite 5 years of congeniality, Person A could not be counted on. Where our relationship was at that point was where it would stay. Person B, however, had the makings of a real friend.
Think I'll see if she wants to go grab a coffee and catch up.