I’ve posted the following image on this site before, but as far as I’m concerned, there’s never a bad time for another go around;
And relating to this, as well as just so we’re clear, using Fred Rogers as a graphic on the recently released skateboard deck was no accident;
Fred’s doctrine is one I cling to with both hands;
Besides celebrating the 50th anniversary of the show’s first airing, I’ve long held close the idea of community and peace through a simple exchange of ideas and words.
I want to be a helper. I want to detract from the noise and the grief. And I fervently believe that in my own clumsy way, after all of these years, I’ve finally begun hitting my stride with those efforts.
I don’t kid myself and think Fred and I are in any way cut from the same cloth, but as I’ve noted here many times before, and as long as I continue to stand at this electronic pulpit, probably will many times again- A little bit of good can detract from a whole lot of bad, and that we never know what kind of waves we will eventually make when we throw that pebble in the water.
I suppose relating to that concept to a degree, I would like to share an experience I had on Tuesday.
As of today, it’s been fifty-one days since I said goodbye to my little pal;
A day hasn’t gone by since that I haven’t felt absolutely rudderless.
I related most completely to a thing someone noted shortly after he died- “since he’s gone, the sun just doesn’t seem to shine as brightly“.
I elaborated on said Tuesday’s experience on the Instantgrahams, but will again here for posterity’s sake;
About two years ago I had a phone call with a woman named Karen A. Anderson. She is, for lack of a more relatable term, an animal psychic.
Our initial meeting was sort of a lark based on the simple curiosity as to what Buddy’s life was like before we found each other. It was fun, but I had natural reservations about her vocation. Desperate to get some closure regarding his recent death, I read her book ‘The Amazing Afterlife Of Animals’, and I spoke with her again yesterday. To say she laid me flat would be an understatement.
Out of the gate she began telling me things no one but DeMonika and I would know. She told me that he was supremely thankful that I wrapped him in my favorite t-shirt when I buried him. Knowing nothing of my extra curricular artistic inclinations, she said he feels most closely connected to me when I’m in my studio, (he’d also mentioned that sometimes he thinks the music I listen to when I paint is too loud), and most astonishingly, she mentioned both of the only two grandparents I knew by name and said they’re together.
At the end of the conversation, I asked if we’d maybe see one another again. She said that he told her when he’s ready, it would be his joy to come back, when he does, he will be very much the same and will make his return evident to me. I realize that the idea of a medium is a difficult thing for most folks to wrap their minds around, and at some point in my life it probably would have been for me as well, but as it stands, I’m a believer, and armed with my discussion with Karen, I look forward to a time at some point down the road when my boy and I can perhaps once again find some afternoon sun, and peacefully drift off together;
If this strikes a chord with you, by all means order The Amazing Afterlife Of Animals (from your local independently owned an operated book store, natch) and/or schedule an appointment with her.
My heart is still broken to a degree that at this point seems beyond repair. However, hearing Karen describe to me that Buddy recognized me as his best friend, and a person he’s eager to eventually return to in physical form makes the pain if not generally tolerable, at least occasionally slightly easier to bear.
In closing I’ll offer two items for your consideration.
The first being that I just got a big reorder of these stickers in stock;
After absolutely destroying myself during a failed a backside curb grind the other day, I can attest to this phrase being truthful.
And lastly, but not leastly- For the kind and patient humans who are currently waiting in line for one of the upcoming (Ron) Burgundy wool jerseys;
I have a funny story to tell.
Because I am completely confused by nearly every single component of clothing manufacturing, I sort of neglected to get matching YKK zippers for this garment in question. Really, it was more an assumption that I could get them from my sew shop as I did last time.
Because my sew shop in only a manufacturer, they of course don’t have these sort of supplies, and all of my contacts there laughed at the big dumb hairy white guy as I sheepishly hung my head in shame at my misunderstanding.
Frantically, I hustled out the door and began making phone calls to zipper distributors, when I found one in Los Angeles who happily set me up with the supplies I needed in order to get the production back into the swing.
I dropped them off immediately, and was fortunate to get to see the embroiderer’s handiwork as well;
Susan the sew shop big boss says now that they have the zippers in hand, they should be turning the jerseys around in the next two weeks.
I can’t apologize for my lag enough, but if you thought I was going to be on the ball and get the jersey order out in rapid fire succession, then I suppose I should be the one looking at you in utter confusion.