My friend and co-worker died in a car wreck yesterday. I think he was in his mid-40s. I clocked in, heard the news, and worked for the next nine hours, smiling in public and trying not to cry in private. When trying to process his sudden absence from our lives, I kept hearing the phrase, "life is fleeting" in my head. That line which I first heard in Gary Oldman's Romeo Is Bleeding so many years ago always sounded somewhat cool and profound. We lose a friend though and the line carries very little weight. I tried to say it in conversation with friends today, but I would ponder it first, decide that it sounded devoid of proper compassion and let it go unsaid.
All of us at the workplace will miss our friend very much. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and loved ones. We're all going to have to just deal with this in each of our own personal ways. (I guess this is mine.) When my wheels wouldn't go, he was my ride to and from work. I'd wait for him outside my apartment while listening to Tom Waits on my iPod. He would pull up and I'd hop into his car where Mariah Carey was always sure to be playing on his stereo. If not the music, then the rides and the good conversations were always well appreciated. He was always a good Samaritan to me.
Life is fleeting. Or, "it's a sad and beautiful world." From Down By Law, starring Tom Waits, John Lurie, and Roberto Benigni, here's one of my favorite scenes.