Where do the good go? It felt more appropriate for this to come from Carl, though we are both without many words about this
“The good die young, but pricks live forever!” –Lewis Black
I wish he had been a prick. Gods, how I wish he was the biggest asshole in the world. Maybe then… maybe his light would still burn as bright as his temper, and as bright as his love.
On Monday last (December 2), I lost a very dear friend. Plagued with health issues over many years, his body had finally had enough. A man who I was proud to call friend, who I was proud to call a brother- in spirit if not blood- passed away very suddenly in his sleep. He is survived by his husband and their daughter.
When I heard, I was stunned. I had exchanged texts and voicemails with him just a couple of days before. We had been trying to get together for a couple of months, but between my hellish work schedule, other obligations, and his surgeries and occasional hospital stay, it kept getting pushed out. I had hope we’d get together to exchange Christmas gifts. I thought… I thought there would always be time. And now there is no more time.
And so on Wednesday evening, when his husband (who is my best friend and was my best man at our wedding) called me and told me… all I could do was sit, in silence, as he related what few details he had. I heard words like ‘medical examiner’ and ‘arrangements’. But I also heard the heartbreak, the exhaustion in my friend’s voice, and felt it myself. Tears welled up unbidden. Britt had overheard, and quietly cried next to me.
His name was Dan, and he loved to call me “little brother”, though I am not sure I ever did anything to deserve it. He was Irish and tough as they come on the outside. But to those who knew him, he was the biggest softie you’d ever know. He was a loving father, a loyal friend. I introduced him to his first shot of tequila (in his late 40’s!). He was a chef who loved to cook and bake whenever the gang went over to play board games, and I’m certain our group owes more than a few pounds we gained over the years to his molten chocolate lava cake and marinara sauce with meatballs and Italian sausages. He gave and gave, often when he had nothing to give, and asked for nothing but friendship in return.
There was so much more to Dan. But I find the words so hard to come by. I will miss him profoundly.
I’m not a religious man (quite the opposite). But if I am wrong, and if there is a place beyond this world that rewards men for the good deeds they have done, I know he’s in that place now.
Goodbye, Dan. I’m sorry there wasn’t enough time.