Monday, August 10, 2009

Aloha to Tom

On Saturday, a group of family and friends said "Aloha 'oe" to Tom Olds who died late last month at the age of 55. Far, far, far too young. He was very sick so there was a lot of "he's at peace now," "he's out of pain now," and all the other appropriate cliches. Cliches become such because they are true and every one of them was certainly true in this case. However, what is also true is that he isn't here anymore. For his friends, that will become easier to deal with over time; for his mother Beverly, his sister Cate, his wife Linda - with whom I have been friends for more than two decades - it will take much, much, much longer for it to become easier. But it will...

Having said that, Tom was a fantastic, quirky, eccentric artist and his work remains, not the least of which is the house he built with his own hands and all the fantastic, quirky, eccentric things in, on, and around it. At the gathering there after his memorial, some of his and Linda's friends - including me - got to meet other friends from other "circles of friends" who had never met or at least never spent any real time together or hadn't lately. That, I think, is what the cliche about the something good coming out of someone's death might have been about in this particular case. Everyone ate and drank and talked and laughed and reminisced and was grateful for the simple things, which when you take a good hard look, are the important things.

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