Monday, April 16, 2012

Something I wrote to a friend who just heard that Lupe Solis died last summer:


I visit some friends in Door County, WI, every summer. I don't always head over to see Lupe after that, but I've done it before and I did it last summer. Severe back pain had limited his activities the previous time I'd been there, and this time he wuz hurting from a horrible case of constipation. I think he said he hadn't shit in three weeks. His doc kept telling him it wuz no big deal. He saw the dude again the day after I got there and, once again, wuz assured he didn't need to be admitted to the hospital. Just got some pills to deal with the problem. So the next day I actually said to him, "Well, now that I know you're not dying, I'm gonna head out tomorrow." Then three or four days later, back at home, I got a call from our boy saying he'd admitted himself to the hospital a couple days after I'd left (the pills having no effect) and been told he had pancreatic cancer...and had less than three months to live. We talked a bit about it at that time, and we talked again a week later. Can't remember what wuz said cuz there obviously wasn't much to say at that point. About a month later, either on Facebook or from an email, I got the word from Kolnick that Lupe had died.

There's not much to say now either, I guess, unless you've got a belief system that you think applies. I do, but I only think of it as something that works for me, not something I'm gonna write a book about or anything--and actually having nothing at all come after this life and having death merely end "the thousand natural shocks which flesh is air to" works just fine for me, too. God knows Lupe's flesh had its share of shocks.

And it's not like Lupe and I were even keeping close enough contact for this to hit me in a major way--and who even gives a shit how it hits me, anyway? But we talked on the phone from time to time, and we saw each other almost every year. If I were to have eulogized the man, I would have reflected on how, anytime we got on the phone and starting talking about anything--English Dept. politics, dumbass students, pop culture--anything...we laughed together as much or more as when I talk with anyone else on the planet.

I do miss that lad.


Saturday, April 07, 2012

Dead Celebrities

We swim, we drift, we drown,
We wash ashore, bloated.

In some other world we
make the six o'clock news.