So Much For Immortality…

If this isn't a familiar logo to my generation...

If this isn’t a familiar logo to my generation…

You know, I have to wonder if EVERY generation thinks that they are the first ever immortal generation.  I know that the friends I went to high school with and I thought we surely must be…

Monty. He was that amazing punk rocker; the first one I ever met. Dude made punk uber cool, in my young eyes. 🙂

I met him through my then-boyfriend/now-bestie, Larry.

Monty had THE HAIR. It was so dark, but it had that white “skunk stripe” through it. I, to this day, do not know if it was natural or Lady Clairol, lol… I do, however, remember Lar introducing me to him. And that stripe fascinated the hell out of me!

I also know that Larry loved him like an estranged, long lost, did-everything-together-when-they-were-growing-up brother.

Monty was bad-ass. Monty was 50 Shades of Cool. Monty introduced this girl to the Ramones. This girl banged her head to more Ramones tunes than any middle-aged grandma should admit to, yet I did. That introduction sent me all over the genre musical map. My love of The Pretenders can be blamed on…no…credited to Monty.

I didn’t know him well, but I knew him, thanks to Larry.

So, the other day, Larry alerts me that Monty is having a huge health issue. That morning we had one of those “never want to have these” kind of conversations that we all start having in our mid forties, but won’t actually admit they are what they are until we are fifty or better.

“So you remember Monty,” I receive.

“Of course,” I reply, “How is he? Please tell me he is okay!”

Because sometimes you just ‘get a feeling’ when messages like this make themselves known, I’d just hoped that he’d had a wreck or something minor, you know…because lottery winnings arent ever brought up like that… In this case? Monty didn’t win the lottery. Oh, no. Dude was dying. Apparently that bastard, cancer, had him by the brain. When Lar told me, my heart broke. It broke a little more when I stalked his and his wife’s facebook pages.

One of my oldest buddies was crying. That doesn’t happen over nothing, for what it’s worth. I picked up, somewhere along the line, that this generation is iron-clad. We are immortal. Yeah, we have our scares… But honestly? They are just that; scares.

From what I gather, he has been sick for a while. As I’ve mentioned, I went through a huge reduction in “friends” on my FB page last summer, so I followed the people I remain close to and stalked the rest…or…friends by proxy. He and his wife started dating thirty-plus years ago. They’ve been married thirty-plus years. They have daughters.

So I was sitting two rooms away from my phone yesterday, with Suck Foot propped, because three hours of walking on Saturday was too much for it, and it (the phone, not suck foot) rang and it was a while before I got to it to see who called.

There was voicemail. My other friend, Brad, whom I haven’t seen, probably, since the summer of 84 when we all hung out at my little apartment in Lubbock, called. Monty lost his battle.

People are wrecked.

My generation is not the first ever immortal generation. Talk about a wake-up call.

Monty, this is for you…and Larry…and Brad…and Brian…and Jeff:

Be strong, you guys! Safe travels, Monty! ❤

(As a post-script – I have had people I care for die, but none have ever been from our generation.)

Ode to a Friend…

This is so true...

This is so true…

This post is sad.

You’ve been appropriately warned.

When someone you consider family passes away, many thoughts and memories have a tendency to fill your mind, whether you want them to or not.

A friend and work family member passed this evening and I felt the need to write.

When I interviewed for my job at the hospital, She Who Shall Not Be Named introduced me to this person and I apparently passed muster. This was kind of a long standing joke while she was working at the hospital.

Once I started my job, I playfully joked around with this individual, and She Who Shall Not Be Named always used to say, “Don’t complain if you play with the puppy and find that you’ve been licked in the face.” I used to laugh at this, because no WAY was this person going to lick me in the face. Like, ever! (Oh, how wrong I was, LOL…)

He asked me to help him design a logo for his business (he was a DJ and did weddings, and the local Center Street Jam, playing tunes before the shag bands took the stage. He was pretty terrific, and I put together what ended up to be my favorite and most recognizable logo (locally) for him. (He was big time into shag music, which is a local thing; Google it if you’re not familiar.)

Time passed, and I married one of the maintenance guys in December of 2003. Our friend DJ’d our wedding, and also helped cook our yummy feast. I can’t believe that was almost 11 years ago, but it was.

Our friend was very active in our local ACS Relay for Life (the hospital team) and has/had this amazing quilt hanging in his office with all the themes from our team t-shirts.

Time passed some more, as it always does, and She Who Shall Not Be Named left the organization, and I got my new (and current) boss. So one day I was playing around with our friend and told him about playing with the puppy and damed if he didn’t lick me in the face. I turned so many shades of red that I don’t think Crayola would have been able to name enough crayons.

That’s not to say we didn’t have our disagreements. This guy and I had a major falling out a few years back, but we patched things up, just like regular family does.

He got sick a few months ago. He wasn’t looking so good. He had seen several doctors, but nobody could really put their finger on the problem. Then they thought it was his gallbladder.

Four weeks ago (while we were about to upgrade our server) he came into my office, like he often did, sat down and said it was nice to be there because it was quiet. He’d been resting in that seat off and on for a couple of weeks. We’d visit, and gossip, and joke around. We talked about what was going on with his health. A few of us suggested that he go to our emergency department because his doctor wouldn’t do gallbladder surgery because of his heart health, but it was going to be a long drawn out process to get him to the cardio-guy for the appropriate tests. Later, that last day that he sat in the relative quiet of my office before the server guy from Chicago came in to upgrade the hardware, he did go to the ED and was admitted and on the second floor. By the end of the week he was in ICU.

He passed just a couple hours ago, and there are a whole lot of people that are grieving right now. Myself, and my team at work, included. I called She Who Shall Not Be Named and we are all in the same place.

For us, those that worked with him? This is a suckfest of epic proportions. Our hearts are broken. Thank the powers that be that we have each other to lean on in the morning. I’m also thankful that the Hubs also worked with us, up until 5 years ago, and knows everyone affected and is appropriately sad.

Go in peace, my friend. You’re going to be missed by so many, and so many of us loved you, but we know you’re in a better place.

This one is for you, SD!

 

Until next time…

 

 

For Jan…

Because she loved Chardonnay and sandals. I saw more of her toes than anything...

Because she loved Chardonnay and sandals. I saw more of her toes than anything…

So I had this friend. Her name was Jan.

I met her when my small business was nominated for a local award…I think it was June 2010. She was the general manager of our local mall.

Jan hired me for a lot of mall shoots; in fact, she asked me to shoot the 4th of July fireworks from on TOP of the mall. I overcame my fear of ladders and climbed straight up to the mall roof and got my tripod and camera set up. I shot some killer photos, which can be found here.

Jan and I became fast friends. We both had a love of marketing and a love of wine. She called me to come shoot our mall’s events, and I was loving every minute of it.

She introduced me to turducken, which, if you’ve been following me since the beginning, was what we had for Thanksgiving dinner, back in 2011. So, this is what turducken looks like:

turducken 11-11And, damn, y’all! It was good. Food was good, company was good; the whole freaking day was just…GOOD.

So from that point on, Jan and I would hook up and have wine at a few local dining establishments – with oysters or wings, or just munchies in general, and she was amazing at making me feel so much better about myself. In fact, I posted a blog here about having amazing women friends. Sometimes we’d meet alone, sometimes with the hubs and some others from our business networking group, and sometimes with just another really cool woman friend…Jan talked me through a really dark period in my life and made me see some things from a different perspective. I’ll never forget that.

Eventually I closed my business, and withdrew membership to our business networking group, but we tried to keep up with each other. When the new Harris Teeter opened up here in greater Goldsboro last August, we bumped into each other and talked about getting together. Seemed like every time I went to the Teeter, Jan was there. “Let’s get together,” we’d say…and we never made it happen.

Hell, I just saw her not 5 weeks ago at the Teeter…It was sleeting and it was March and it was weird that it was sleeting in March. We smiled and waved, thinking we had all the time in the world.

Bzzzt…wrong answer. She was getting ready to go…to Pennsylvania to her sister’s place. I got a PM while in a meeting at work this morning from Ruth Anne, a member of our networking group, telling me that Jan passed away this morning. She forwarded me the email that she received, and I still haven’t had the opportunity to cry this out.

Because we lost touch, because I loved her, because I’ve missed her, and because I kick myself for not staying in touch, I submit the following mini-gallery:

I’m sorry, Jan, that we didn’t stay close. I’m going to miss you. I purchased a bottle of Flip Flop Chardonnay and drank it this evening in your honor. Chardonnay because you loved it, and Flip Flop because I will remember you for always showing your badass toes.

I know people die every day…just not MY people. I’m pretty sure the damn is gonna break, and I’m fairly certain it’s going to go down while I am in the tub tonight, so yeah.

Further? Don’t say, “let’s get together” and then not do it. Life’s lesson learned, ok? Because this shit’s just too damned short, y’all…

Rest easy, Girl. You’re going to be missed…a LOT…

Until next time….