Friday, February 10, 2017

Cancer Sucks

I have been working on this Top Ten Albums of 2016 post since December, but that took a back burner.  Within the past month I have lost two fishing buddies to cancer. January 20, my Uncle Paul was taken, then February 4, my good friend David.

Paul was always at the cottage we rented annually.  The man loved his Old Style beer, and his cigarettes. He was an avid fisherman, usually outfishing all of us while so tipsy, his boat would just be blowing in circles out in the lake. He was a character like none other. I never met anyone that was anything like Uncle Paul, truly one of a kind.  He'd always find something to criticize me about, whether it was some "fancy beer" I was drinking (you know, like Fat Tire) or that I was using fly fishing gear, or just that I was wearing all black.  One time, he tried to get a rise out of me by asking if I was wearing black underwear too.  I revealed to him that I was in fact wearing black underwear! Laughs all around!  There was a time I caught a massive rock bass off the dock on fly gear.  Uncle Paul said, "you caught it on that?" like he was in disbelief that fish could actually be caught on fly gear.  I think the photos below are from 2013
Uncle Paul, my brother Kyle, and Aunt Lolly

Nice bass, Uncle Paul

David lived right up the street from Hubbard Park.  Hubbard park is one of my favorite places in the world.  A beautiful park on the often overlooked Milwaukee River.  I fish there often, and any time I'd be fishing there over the past couple years I'd send Dave a message.  He'd usually come down and we'd hang out for hours.  Dave was not a fisherman, but we spent a lot of time together while I was fishing.  The fishing would take a back seat, becoming an afterthought when Dave was around.  I think I only caught one fish in his presence.  I'd often have one, or both my kids. Olive wrapped up in a Moby Wrap on my chest, while Cleo ran free and terrorized geese.  He loved my kids and was great with them.  He was one of those people that I had an instant connection with. We listened to the same kind of obscure music, watched the same kind of movies and TV shows, enjoyed an occasional shot of whiskey. I had some great times with him and his wife at Cards Against Humanity parties or bonfires, or at their house where we'd talk until the sun started to rise.  Life got in the way over the course of the last year, I never even knew he was sick.  I moved out of town and found myself spending less time with those I was closest to.  It's easy to think that your friends will always be there.  It was just last Thursday we learned the cancer in his brain was not treatable. he left us two days later.

Don't take those who are special to you for granted.

No comments:

Post a Comment