Thursday, October 07, 2010


*I wrote out this entry and then deleted most of it. You don't need to know how he died. No, that's wrong. I don't want to tell you about how he died. I want to tell you how he lived.*

For obvious reasons, I've been thinking a lot about Jeff over the last few days.

Not the Jeff of Jeff and Brad - although he is, of course, totally blog and thought worthy.

But no. Not that Jeff. Not tonight.

The particular Jeff I'm referring to, one of the best friends I ever had, has been gone - yes, as in dead - for over 15 years...which is crazy to me...that it's been that long. But I did the math yesterday in my head and yes, yes it really has been 15 years.


Well now didn't that just put me in my aging place?


This is one of my all-time favorite memories of him.

The crew - Jeff, Drew, Dean, Jonnie, and I - were over at Drew and Jeff's house one night. You know, just hanging out, drinking, laughing, talking, listening to music. Beck. And Gordon Lightfoot thankyouverymuch.

We were all, all but Drew, church mouse poor then. Me, a college student. Dean and Jeff under-employed roofers. Jonnie...what was Jonnie doing at the time? Waitressing maybe. Or nothing at all. I don't remember.

But! Between the 5 of us, we'd managed to scrape up enough money to order a feast of delivery Chinese food.

Jeff, bouncing off the walls he was so hungry, impatiently paced around while we waited and lamented about his rumbling stomach. Oh my gawd, that guy could eat!


Food arrived.

Jeff hurried it into the kitchen, giggling in giddy anticipation, talking to himself in gleeful tones, moving as fast as he could, and started unpacking the containers of kung pao beef, sesame chicken, chicken and snow peas, sweet and sour shrimp, fried rice. He piled a plate nearly a foot high with all the saucy goodness and started to make his way back toward the living room.

Alas, Baby, his dog, had other plans for him. Worked up over Jeff's antsy vibe, Baby came barreling toward Jeff and his precarious plate of food.

Knocking into Jeff's legs with gusto, Jeff tripped over Baby's back and went sprawling.

So did his plate.

So did all his tasty morsels.

"Aw, fuck," he said. Then, "Fuck it."

He stood up, surveyed the mess on the floor, largely contained in a 1'x1' area, said nothing else and turned back toward the kitchen.

He returned a moment later with the biggest grill spatula known to man and, without ceremony, began to scoop all the Chinese food back onto his plate.

Jonnie and I, sitting side by side on the loveseat watching, occasionally giggling furiously, were dumbfounded then when Jeff sat down across from us, plate in hand, and began to shovel the freshly scooped-off-the-floor Chinese food into his flavor hole.

Jonnie: Jeff! What the hell are you doing?!

Jeff: Leave me alone. I want to have enough for seconds.

I love you, Jeff. I miss you.

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