Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Starting Line

I have not done this in a while. At least not since I deleted a social networking page profile that was well a symbol of what people want to be viewed as more so than perhaps who they really are.

I occasionally shared my thoughts on that site's blog. Sometimes political thoughts, sometimes abstract, some dark comedy, and almost all those thoughts where laced with a level of sincerity. Thanks to a friend and co-worker/employee I am here embracing the opportunity to express similar thoughts on a site that appears to be less about popularity and more about: inspiration be it good, bad, or ugly as well as pure thought invoking sincerity. Of course you will inevitably sample some filler items on the menu before discovering the finer offerings any one venue may have to offer: so keep a glass of water and a piece of ginger near by for the occasional palette cleanser.

As for today, a Wednesday evening is my starting line. For a dear friend of my Dad, I'd say Father but Dad is more appropriate, today was his finish line. Bobby Payette passed this morning. He was a man who was a bit of a mentor to my Dad and as he put it when he called me at work tonight to tell me "the best best best friend I ever had isn't with us anymore." Then he asked if I knew who he was talking about. My heart stopped at first, no discredit to Bobby's importance to me, and I feared my Mom had passed unexpectedly but I paused for a moment and knew my Dad would be far more distraught and responded "Bobby."

Bobby helped my Dad start his landscaping business over 25 years ago. They built many of the cross-tie walls at Six Flags and for several years did annual maintenance on the many trees enhancing the amusement park. Bobby almost religiously brought donuts to our house on Friday mornings for my two younger brothers and I. He was always warm. He was a shorter gentleman with a classic Texas handlebar mustache of fine grey hair complimented by a soft head of grey hair. He was a working man though so his hands were calloused and his grip was firm. He was always pleasant, always, even when I saw him after he and my father had shared a few drinks at the end of a hard days work. This is how I remember Bobby. I had not seen him in several years. The last time I saw him the many days of hard labor were showing their toll on this fine Southern man. My dad said it best tonight when he told me in a shaky voice "He was one of the realest people I ever knew." For some this may seem like a weird or even silly comment. In a world of fads, fashion, binge diets, myspace, facebook, plastic surgery and so many more superficial matters this is a rare compliment "to be a real person".

close your eyes and see, who you really are.