Should probably note up front: this is a random Stevo ramble that accomplishes nothing, has no legitimate point, and is just me sounding things out on a keyboard. Uum, you're welcome?
Earlier today, my mom called me as I was leaving work, a phone call that caused me to miss the 4:20 bus home* … and forced me to stand in 110 degree temperatures for almost 30 minutes waiting for the next one.
(*: yes, the Metro ride home is scheduled to arrive at 4:20. You CANNOT make sh*t like this up. As my brother put it a couple weeks ago: “the only way it’d be funnier is if you were on the 5150 route!” Uum … gulp?)
Anyways, mom was calling to tell me that a man I knew growing up, a man whose scholarship he gave me helped my family be able to afford to allow me to attend the university I wanted to (TCU: only $331 / credit hour 18 years ago!!! ), a man who has fallen on hard times (mostly of his own fault), a man whose kids I knew as friends, albeit not close enough to earn a nickname on this site … had chosen to check out of this life by his own choosing today.
Who the person is, isn’t what’s important. To be honest, given what his life spiraled into over the last ten or so years of his life? He probably did the honorable thing by taking his own life. As even Rush Limbaugh points out regarding the heinous banking failures and Ponzi schemes that crashed our economy four years ago, “at least the felons in 1929 had the decency to jump out of an 86th floor window”.
Having said that …
Why do people reach a point of feeling so helpless, so hopeless, so defeated, that they choose to kill themselves rather than go on?
Eight years ago come October, I asked those exact same questions regarding a man I loved like a second father, in my buddy Jasson’s father’s suicide. And no matter what the police reports “officially” say, I know my buddy James did the same thing, albeit more violently and probably spur-of-the-momently, six weeks earlier. (Why, you ask, do I “know” this? Because he’s the only person I know who could outdrink me. Put it this way: if I’m only a .11, on a normal August evening, driving home? I don’t plow my car at 75mph into the K-rails unless I fully intended to do so. Especially if I did it at 12:45am on my birthday. Ditto my late buddy, rest in peace sir.)
I certainly am no philosopher – hell, I haven’t stepped foot in a church for something other than a christening, wedding, or funeral in four years, so I can’t even claim to be remotely religious – but I can’t get past the question of “why?”*
(*: if you knew me and “The Voice of Reason” when we lived in Hampton Woods, that “question of “why?”?” will have you laughing out loud and spitting out whatever you’re drinking as you read this … or at least making the person in the stall next to you curious as to what you’re reading …)
So to say I arrived home kind of depressed tonight, was an understatement. Then, I walk in the door … and it’s 87 f*cking degrees in here! Sweet, the AC isn’t working!!! I know, shocking – the AC quits on the hottest day since 2003*. That’s about as out of left field as HHH miraculously remembering he has a sledge hammer hidden underneath the ring as the ref is distracted by his ringside manager. (AKA, for the non-wrestling fans reading this, it ranks somewhere between “yes, I’m drinking right now”, and “yes, I have the “Dallas” reboot on the TV ) right now on the Stevo-Shock-o-Meter. If we were the earthquake reading site, this would rate a negative 25.)
(*: go figure, Russ and Mona called me on the walk home from the bus drop-off, inviting me to the pool for a late-night pool volleyball cession with our good friends from Colorado headed home tomorrow. SON. OF. A. BITCH. I’m not one … but I’m as dumb as one 99.99% of the time …)
I honestly don’t care about the AC, because I’m dogsitting for my folks the next few days, so I’ll just crank their thermostat to 55 and live happily ever after, at least for a couple days, and mine should be fixed by then.
But the man I knew? That at least a few of my regular readers knew (his name rhymes with “Manny Door”, and if you can’t discern it from that “clue”, then sit in a wheelchair and wait for Vice President Biden to ask you to “stand up!”)?
Won’t live happily ever after.
And that haunts me.
I joke a lot on this site, about a lot of things. (See said Biden “Stand Up Chuck!” joke above that will NEVER get old.)
I joke about my diminishing mental faculties … (ok fine, that’s not a joke). I joke about the sole purpose of my life right now being to someday piss on john elway’s tombstone … (ok fine, that’s not a joke either).
But generally speaking? I don’t take life too seriously.
If you can’t laugh at yourself, who can you laugh at? I mean, my God, my life is a sitcom waiting to happen! How many people can be functional alcoholics? How many people can eff up eight ways from Sunday as much as I have, and still live to tell about it? How many people can disappoint as many people as I have with how I turned out, and yet still have the friends he has, say “yeah, he may be a fuck up, but I LOVE THAT GUY!”, like I can? (ok, fine, Dusty can too at times. But still. I don’t have a Kellie (excuse me, “Boasheao”), in my life, so I trump his ace of diamonds with my ace of spades.
This is what truly I don’t get about people who opt to check out voluntarily: really? There’s not ONE person in life that gives enough of a damn about you to say “hey, you ok man?” at least a couple times a year? Again, I freely admit, my life looks worse than 55 car pile-up in the Triangle at 6:45 in the morning at times … but however bad it looks? I know I’ve got so many people that have my back, that I don’t deserve even HALF of who has my back. Not past tense had – HAS my back.
Which is why I fail to grasp why anyone would choose suicide as the best option on the table.
So, allow me to (cue the sexual joke voice) come prematurely! this year … and simply say, that if you like me, if you view me as a friend, if you view me as an acquaintance, if you have ever at least had a beer with me … ok fine, a vodka tonic with me?
I’m thrilled you’re still here.
And I’m not planning on going anywhere anytime soon … other than to the K tomorrow afternoon with one of my best friends in life.
And I’m guessing DJ and I bail on the ballgame no later than the 2nd inning* to head for the best “home away from home” known to mankind, a pool in Raytown where the water currently reads 92 degrees.
And you know what? I’m cool with that. (If it’s possible to be “cool” in a city setting record highs for the next eight days.) Because at least we get to live. Which is more than the man I knew, is doing tonight. And I cannot help but feel for his family, because having lived through what they’re about to endure?
I wouldn’t wish it on john elway.
Enough said. In the words of the great Johnny Bristol, “hang on in there baby”. Life does get better. It NEVER sinks to the lows that a third person I knew and at least had a relationship with in my lifetime, felt it sunk to.
At least it never will for me. And hopefully all of you.
(*: no, really – I’ll be at the K for (possibly) at least an inning tomorrow. On a day projected to shatter the heat record by 3 degrees (hooray 109!!!) I’m guessing I get the “so Mona’s home right, we can use the pool?” moment of “we are f*cking leaving right f*cking now!” moment out of DJ about 11:40am. And I’d bet the under …)