Thank you. Thank you for allowing me to share your burden for a time. The only thing worse than watching your tender heart crushed under the weight of so much would have been to think you’d carried it all alone. I’m so sorry it wasn’t enough.
These last few days, I’ve sat and reread years of conversations with you over text and instant messages. Yes, even the one from 5am on a Saturday. You shared your heart with me and trusted me with struggles I can’t begin to comprehend. I’ve always been far more comfortable in my skin than you ever were in yours. But I loved you just the same.
We shared a love of shooting stuff, both with guns and cameras. We shared random Dr. Who references and discussed deep philosophical concepts. I knew of your heartaches and your moments of joy. You spent so much time caring about everyone else, that I think you forgot to care about yourself.
I lied to you. I said, “Love you too. I think you’re going to be just fine.”
I didn’t think you’d be fine. I hoped beyond hope that you would, but I was so very afraid that you wouldn’t be. Sometimes, I hate being right. I wish you could have seen yourself through my eyes. Maybe, in some moments, you did. Compassionate and funny, smart and creative. And most of all, my friend. I don’t waste my time with worthless people.
Thank you for being a part of my story and allowing me to be a part of yours. Thank you for reaching out to me when you were hurting and giving me the chance to speak love into your life. I had hoped to share more chapters in our stories, but it wasn’t meant to be. Even knowing how the story ends, I wouldn’t trade our time together to be spared the pain of your loss.
But I got to hold his granddaughter before he did. It’s what bratty little sisters have to do.
I don’t know when my brother got old enough to be a grandpa, but there you have it. Hilariously, he’s going to be a daddy again in about 9 weeks. But we all know it’s the aunties that are the favorites anyway 😉
Grace Marie entered the world on Saturday, April 9th weighing in at a mere 5 pounds and 6 ounces. Haven’t held a baby that small in just over 17 years.
He’s grown a bit since then, but Teenbot was only 5 pounds 12 ounces when he came into the world. Sometimes it seems like just yesterday.
She even wiggled out a tiny foot just like her big cousin used to do.
Just wait until she figures out that her great uncle is actually the EvylRobot.
So as you may have seen elsewhere around the interwebs, we spent our weekend with our tribe. Our chosen family. Phlegmfest.
Saturday night sitting in OldNFO‘s living room, I was reminiscing with Christina. I remarked that here in this room sit some of my very favorite people on the planet and it all started with a little shindig she threw some years back. We’d never met, but since Jim suggested she invite us, she did. I think he may have left out the part where he hadn’t met the Evylrobot and me.
But we figured, what the hell. Let’s take a road trip. What could possibly go wrong? I went to my boss to request the time off. He granted it and conversationally asked, “So what do you have planned?”
“Oh, erm. We’re going out of state to meet people from the internet. With guns.”
He gave me the look. You know the one.
Best crazy idea ever.
Never in a million years would I have thought that party would lead all the wild places that it has. Because of that weekend, I have since found myself dressed in a vinyl catsuit standing in a room cheering on the waxing of a friend. We’ve presented a pink gorilla to none other than Lawdog, himself, and we’ve traded puns with Peter and Dot. We’ve killed and eaten some of FarmDad‘s chickens. We’ve spent our lives south of the Mason Dixon, but it took GayCynic to make grits we actually enjoy. I’ve had my intoxication levels evaluated by Matt G, and gone antiquing with the divine miss Phlegmmy.
It was a pleasure, as always, to spend the weekend with this ragtag group of mischief makers. My soul is replenished by the laughter of my friends. Those of the tribe that didn’t make it, know that you were missed, and we look forward to being in your company soon. Hopefully no one will wind up in the emergency room next time.
Yep, I skipped day 6 altogether and then totally flubbed 12. 3rd take. Sorry, I wasn’t doing it again. That one is freaking long!
Hmm, I’ve got better recording equipment now. Maybe I should revisit these.
Go visit Squeaky for The Fun Show song. You know what it takes to be a well-trained vocalist? A lot of work, dedication, and madness. Probably an extra helping or two of madness. How many of you had teachers reach out and press on your diaphragm? Or hand you a chalk board to carry around to communicate because they’ve put you on a week of vocal rest (no talking at all)? And don’t even get me started on vocal drills and warm-ups*.
Yeah, I know exactly how hard Squeaky worked to be the vocalist she is, and she did this as a gift for a friend. To have someone rip off her labor of love is unforgivable. And not only hers, but Tam’s words and Ambulance Driver’s work. Not that I’ve ever sent any traffic to the site which will not be named, but I ask that you spread the word and starve them of attention.
Other than polite reminders (already issued) and the distant possibility of lawyering up — Tam’s a writer and her stock in trade is the unique groupings of words she creates — there’s not a whole lot that can be done.
But there is one thing. Cato famously ended every speech he made in the Roman Senate with “Carthage must be destroyed,” even if all he was talking about was proclaiming Junior Vestal Day. The phrase I’d like you to remember and to post all over the Internet is “Dan Zimmerman. Intellectual property thief.Dead Hooker Magazine.” And good morning, search engines!
If you are seeing this, then this website has successfully migrated to a new host (Which is actually the old host I left 3 years ago. The grass was decidedly not greener.). Please let me know if you stumble across any weirdness. Website weirdness. Jennifer weirdness is to be expected.
If I choose to engage in a debate with you*, take it as a compliment. I have already decided that I respect you enough to honestly consider your point of view. Sure, I disagree and even believe you are wrong. But I do not believe you are an idiot. Misguided, maybe. Or maybe I am.
You see, although I believe I have taken the best possible stance based on what I know to be true and the experiences I have had, I am always willing to increase the dataset I am working with. Provide enough information and/or a perspective I hadn’t considered, and you might even change my mind. It’s happened before. Even if you don’t, you will increase my understanding of your point of view provided we can have an actual conversation coming from a place of mutual respect.
I do not engage idiots. I have, and it only ends in frustration. It often descends into name calling and adds nothing to the overall discourse. I have no desire to add to the animosity and division in the world. I want to come away from debates enlightened, not angry. I think we’ve all spent too much time getting angry at the image we hold of various people, and too often we forget that it’s a person behind the beliefs they may hold.
I believe you are better than that. I believe you are capable of considering my point of view as well. I may not change your mind, and that’s okay. We can still be friends even if we disagree.
*I bet you think this post is about you, don’t you? Don’t you? Naw, you’re not vain. It might be. You aren’t alone. Please tell me you’re singing now.
I’m sure you’re a super nice guy, and yes, your kid* is freaking adorable with those bright blue eyes and long camel eyelashes, but your game could use a bit of work. For one, although I’m sure the family pool at the Y is a great place to get to know some local ladies, you should probably steer clear of the ones with rocks on their hands. Particularly when the guy with the matching ring is just a few feet away.
Also, I don’t know how it’s possible that I could smell your body spray from 3 feet away in a chlorinated pool. That’s some serious dedication. At least we all know you aren’t afraid of commitment, but you and that bottle might need some time apart. Honestly, I’m kind of fascinated. Does that require a brining process to get the full saturation? Hmm, maybe I don’t really want to know. I suppose it could be related to amazingly well-manicured stubble.
And by the way, the cute little lifeguard is probably younger than your swim trunks.
*I assume it’s your kid. I suppose that could be your nephew or just some random toddler you picked up on the way. Either way, he’s got that flirtation game down.