Remembering a friend

14 Feb

When a friend leaves his life too early, it makes you reflect on certain things. Sometimes I have a knee jerk reaction especially when it comes to self preservation. So in terms of Jason I could have done things differently. I could have been a better friend.

Jason entered my life through my brother in grade school, when I felt people younger than me were more of an irritation than anything else. So at that time I didn’t notice him. It wasn’t until after his car accident that I got to know him better and how funny, smart and classy he was. Emphasis on funny.

I think part of the reason he was so funny is that because if he didn’t laugh he would cry. He was in a lot of pain.

He liked to read. Catcher in the Rye and Nine Stories were a couple of his favorites. And he liked Kurt Vonnegut.

I remember that when became friends he told me that I had an inferior education because I went to public school and he had it better because he had gone to Brophy. Well, maybe…I think it’s true he was exposed to things in school that I wasn’t, or maybe I just wasn’t interested or motivated in school.

He told me about his relationship with his grandfather (his Mom’s Dad) who used to have a house on a lake somewhere in Pennsylvania. His grandfather had a forge and he when he talked about him he said he was a renaissance man. He could do many things. He was a bookkeeper and might have been a friend of cosa nostra. I’m not sure if that was true or if Jason was just embellishing his past to impress me.

One of his favorite movies was The Big Lebowski. We used to watch it together and laugh. Not just laugh but we had big belly laughs. Like we fell off the bed we laughed so hard. There are only a few people in my lifetime so far I have laughed that way with.

We would eat teriyaki chicken bowls from Tokyo Express and watch The Sopranos together. This was when I was quite broke, not working and Jason had cable (specifically HBO). We enjoyed Bill Maher and I was always glad to be with someone who could laugh at religion and politics the same way I felt.

In a previous life we might have been married. But he really needed a girl with bigger boobs (his admission). I remember he told me once that if I got a boob job he would have married me. This made me laugh really hard.

I remember we went to The Herb Box in North Scottsdale (this is when he lived in that neck of the woods). We sat outside and ate our jerk pork sandwiches, drank tropical iced tea and felt fabulous among the good looking fabulous people.

Jason was actually fabulous looking. He was a great dresser and towards the end he enjoyed body ink. Over a couple of months, we would go to the Crawling Squid on Bethany Home Road, maybe once weekly and he would start shopping for a new tattoo. He had a question mark on one shoulder and an exclamation point on the other.

I wished that we could have taken a trip together. Especially when he was in better shape, because when he was feeling better he would have been fun to travel with. He appreciated good food, architecture and culture. He told me about a trip he took with my brother and his Mom to San Francisco and it was very opulent, they stayed somewhere very nice, I don’t remember the name of the place but the way he described the trip, I just knew it would have been a blast to have been there with them. I think he also said he and his family went once to Ireland, he has some roots there. I can imagine a photo of him there as a tweener in a fishermans sweater, with his blonde hair blowing in the wind, standing on a hilly bluff. With a goofy smile.

RIP my friend 🙂



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