I was thinking about an old friend, so I googled him. Bill. It turns out that he passed away last year. I loved this dude.
An absolutely beautiful obituary was written for him. I think I might know who wrote it. I think it might have been his lawyer friend, Jimmy. The obituary was eloquent, and it was so touching and perfect and joyous, I’m thinking it had to be Jimmy.
Jimmy was a super cool guy too. Jimmy was maybe the second funniest guy I ever hung around with. First place in funny went to Bill, without doubt. But Jimmy, one time I remember Jimmy coming to the restaurant where Bill and I worked, it was a huge seafood joint in a mall on a riverfront. Outside the restaurant, on these large concrete ledges, some skaters were ripping it up: board slides, nose slides, grinds and whatever and so on. Jimmy, who had come to the restaurant dressed in the most stylish and powerful lawyer suit imaginable, was watching the kids on the skateboards. He left his drink sitting there, and he went outside and approached the skaters. I watched him. The next thing I knew, Jimmy had borrowed one of the guy’s skateboards and he was riding around on it, doing little tricks, his tie and jacket flapped in the breeze. Jimmy. Ha. He is one cool cool guy.
Bill and Jimmy were so close. It was such a trip to see them carrying on together. Bill and Jimmy partied real hard.And in style. The degree and the style were beyond anything I ever saw before or since. There’s nobody like Bill, and there’s nobody like Jimmy. Originals.
It was impossible to dislike Bill. He was kind and polite upon first meeting him, and then his sense of humor quickly won you over, totally. His humor was on all levels. He did voices. He did weird faces. He would joke on you. He would joke with you. He played on words. He made references. He brought about absurdities. He had goofy sayings that quickly spread – eventually everybody in his circle would adapt his goofy sayings. His humor was comprehensive. If you were hanging out with him, you were going to laugh, and you were going to have a good time.
Bill was generous. He was always the one buying drinks. He was always making sure his friends were taken care of. I actually worked in two places with him. He moved on to the huge seafood joint and he got me a job there. He always wanted friends around him, and they were always in abundance around him. He would keep the party going no matter what. He literally would party till he dropped. I remember one time, Bill, Jimmy and I were in this bar. Bill was exhausted, but he didn’t want to go home. He started to nod off right in the middle of a crowded, loud bar. I was sitting there, and Jimmy was at the bar hitting on some smoking young lady. Bill didn’t want to rain on the parade and make Jimmy take us home and ruin Jimmy’s chances with that lady.
I could go on and on…but…
The last time I spoke with Bill, it was over the phone. He found out where I worked and called me there. I was a cook in a smaller seafood restaurant on a smaller river in the middle of nowhere. He wanted me to blow off work and come hang with him while he was in town that weekend. I had to work all weekend. I just remember him saying, “You have to.” You have to come party with me, this is not a party you’ll want to miss. Sadly, I didn’t get to see him that weekend, and he went back to his home in another town. I should have stayed in touch with him. I still think about some of the goofy things he said and did, and I know I’ll never forget him.