Monday, June 04, 2018

Life can really be an asshole sometimes.

Normally I don't talk about my personal life much because the Bay Area is just a bunch of small worlds. It seems like a big place, but it's really not. But this has been bothering me ~really~ recently so I'm gonna post about it.

I got pulled into this drama about three weeks ago. I've been living next to my neighbors about about 10 years now. I'd mostly grown fond of "him". The husband. The wife was really almost never home. And I'd already decided I wasn't a huge fan of "hers". When I first met her she used the term Ugly Americans, and she's one of those "global citizens". So.. she's fine. But I can take or leave her. She's nice of course. I just don't think we have anything in common.

Over the years I would talk to Him and he would make comments about her along the lines that a lot of husbands do. Ya know.. the ol' ball and chain kinda thing. But a lot of husbands like to pretend they could do without their wives. So I really didn't say any attention to it. It's something I sort of think guys do with each other.. so I pretty much ignore this kind of talk because I think most guys are just bullshitting each other. But over the years they spent so much time apart I started telling Mr S. that I really didn't think they loved each other and were just staying together for convenience.

Fast forward to about three weeks ago when I was out doing yard work their kid who is my age stopped to ask me if I would keep an eye out for their dad. He'd become ill and while they were over there all the time - he's getting older. I literally had met them one time before. But I said I was happy to because I kinda liked the old guy. We exchanged numbers and stuff. The wife was on a four month travel excursion.

Then three weeks ago when I was in Half Moon Bay I got a text from her asking if I was the one who found her dad. Apparently he was bringing his cans out to the front and his heart just stopped. Someone in the neighborhood saw him and saved his life. We were all really relieved. At the time they couldn't figure out why his heart just stopped. He didn't have a heart attack or a stroke or anything. But after about a week he wasn't getting better, he was getting worse.

I guess they took him back in and found out he has cancer. And he's just too frail and old to have that fixed. So now he's just waiting to re-die. And I think that is really fucked up.

I mean, I know it's nice his family gets to say their goodby's, but before he'd just checked out. Now he knows he dying. And who knows when that is going to happen.

Selfishly I think I'm gonna have to be forced into a funeral. And I sort of don't want to go. I sort of want to remember him the way he was. And really before three weeks ago - I had no ties to this family. But now "she" thinks that I am somehow special because I was the only one he let see him before they knew the final diagnosis. And really I was just being neighborly. I was fond of the old guy, and his wife was never home. I don't know anything about their family dynamics except from his perspective.

Plus, I kinda thought I was pretty aware of how cruel life can be. But waiting to re-die is a cruelty that hadn't really crossed my mind before.


  1. Wow! I feel like I should leave a comment but I really don't know what to say.

  2. Yeah. Good news everyone! They saved you. Bad news. You are going to die. So messed up.

  3. Capital of Texas RefugeeSaturday, June 09, 2018 7:30:00 PM

    Just go to the funeral whenever it comes up ...

    Going through one is shitty enough already for the family.

    At least they've thought about inviting you.

    Once there was this funeral I was invited to after the funeral was over.

    Yeah, you read that right: someone bothered to call me after the funeral was over and then as an afterthought realized that I should have been invited.

    He was a good friend, but I'd just moved back into town after one of my times away when I'd been living abroad, and so there were only a few people who had my new phone number. Still, it was in my friend's address book because I wrote it in there, and several of the people who went to the funeral had my number. My E-mail address hadn't changed in over ten years, and I had been checking my E-mail daily.

    I figured it was a good time to prune some overgrowth in friendships back to the people I could trust to give me a call when something big was going down. I wasn't the only one that happened to, and I wasn't the only one who reacted the way I did.

    So as much as you don't want to deal with a funeral, be happy that the guy's family is actually thinking ahead so that you can be there.

  4. It's a perspective I hadn't considered. And I realize I'm being very selfish. It's just I've already been to more than my fair share of funerals. Normally though, I don't have the luxury of not having to go through that whole end of life journey. Death rarely makes it easy for anyone. And those are the images you are left with.

    But I see what you are saying. And thanks for that.