Friday, March 27, 2009

I Don't Know How To Write This

I recently wrote about the death of a professor of mine. It was easy to write. He'd influenced me and I wanted to share something of his life with everyone I know.

And, a few days ago, I was informed of the unexpected death of an acquaintance. Actually, he was a former acquaintance. While I can't pin it down exactly, I'm pretty sure my last conversation with him was something along the lines of, "Fuck you," "Fuck you too." There was a lot of anger between us, and I'm pretty sure that the last time I actively thought of him, the thought was, "I really hope I don't see him tonight."

And I just found out he died. (Ironically, he died the day I was hoping I wouldn't see him.)

I know that, given unlimited time, we never would have been the best of friends. But I had kind of hoped -- as I do with all people when friendships go bad -- that, some day, given enough time, we'd run into each other someplace and be civil with each other. Exchange pleasantries. Maybe even laugh.

Well, that's shot.

I would be lying if I said I regretted our fight and the way things went down. This isn't one of those posts about being careful what you say to people because those words may be your last, or whatever. But I do regret that we didn't have the luxury of time to get past it.

And I'm actually regretting the petty way I treated someone else. (Someone who is, conveniently, still alive.) I mean, someone unexpectedly dropping dead tends to put into perspective what matters and what doesn't, and treating someone unnecessarily badly (and knowing you're doing it) just isn't something that goes in the "important" column. It isn't something I want between me and this person (and it certainly isn't something I want on my side of the ledger if there's someone up there keeping score).

So this acquaintance who died -- I don't think that his life made a lasting positive impression on me (I hope it did for someone), but his sudden passing may have.

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