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Wednesday, February 6, 2013

A tribute to my friend, Ed.... Rest in Peace dear friend

Today, I lost a dear, sweet friend.  Wow, what a way to wreck a day.

I wanted to pay tribute to him in the most appropriate way - for me.  I found this to be the most fitting, as it is my own personal forum.

Ed was one of my biggest supporters of my blog and my Facebook Blog Page.  He commented regularly and always let me know how he felt about what I had to say - the good, the bad and the ugly.

I type this through tears.  Ed was a good friend.  Someone I cared about. Someone who crawled under my skin and wormed his way into my heart. The heart that now feels like it's on fire.

It would be so cliche to say that Ed was a great man, but he was.

The Sal & Ed - "Jenn Sandwich" Special
I hate that I'm speaking of my friend in the "was" tense.  It sucks.

Ed was so much to so many - fun, always fun.  I know right now he'd be pissed that I'm crying, but we friend people - We're all supposed to grow really old and launch spit balls at each other from the other side of the nursing home.

Today, after hearing the news my mind flashed to so many scenes in my life where Ed was a part of it.  I remember (all the way) back to Mr. Scielzo's 8th grade science class.  Him sitting at the desk next to me drumming on the desk.

Ed and I didn't remain friends after high school, maybe not even after junior high school.  It's hard to remember.  We had a renewed "Facebook Friendship".  All of us Clifton High School people - or at least the group of us that get together the most often.  The first time I saw Ed again after 20 some odd years, he said... "Jenn, I have to tell you - and don't get mad - but I had to year book you when you friend requested me."

I got over that & that became the beginning of our fun "rekindled" friendship.  There were many fun outs with Ed - not just Ed for anyone who may be wondering - our group.  He was even the "hubby approved date" on outings my husband didn't feel like attending.  Ed picked me up at the front door and delivered me home in one piece.  Safe and sound.  No issues, no worries.

Ed and I often argued "bantered" ARGUED.  He was a very opinionated Liberal and I'm well... not.  I think the only reason he tolerated me at all is because I know what I'm talking about, usually, and I don't pull any punches.  I keep an open mind and I reserve judgement.  I also had no problem telling him, "Just so you know, your Facebook page is blocked from my news feed until after the election."  He laughed, I laughed and that was that.  Many, many, many a time the words "agree to disagree" had to be said or posted or whatever.  I don't back down and he didn't back down.  I loved that!  Even that!

Because under that stubborn, sometimes pain in the butt - was the sweetest, kindest, gentlest human being.
Someone you can't help but love.  Someone who took a little piece of my heart along with him.

Christmas 2011 - my house
Sunday mornings he was "picking up the penguins."  ie:  Driving the nuns to church and every Christmas he was Santa - and what an incredibly endearing Santa he was.  He came to our house on Christmas eve and surprised the girls and some of our neighbors.

He was always so kind hearted.  He would do anything for anyone any time.  Out of the way - not a problem.

Ed lived his life.  He had fun.  Lots of it.  I'm not sure there was an outing he's ever missed, if he did it was because he was at a Super Bowl or the Grand Canyon.  He was always a part of the party, and for that I'm grateful.

Many times we'd have conversations and he'd jokingly say that he was looking for Mrs. Right now.  I'd ask him what about Mrs. Right - and he simply said that just didn't work out for him.  Maybe he'd just been single for too long.

What he didn't realize is that already had the deep love of many, many women.  Maybe not exactly in the way he was hoping for - but if you look through Ed's pictures on Facebook -  he's almost always surrounded by hot women.  Women who all called him friend and who all loved him.

Many a blog post was written here with Ed in mind... I won't tell all, but for certain the post:
If Today Was Your Last Day (you can click on the highlighted area to read the edited version which shows the initial inspiration)  Now that I look at the title of the blog, it seems ironic.

There are so many amazing things about Ed - I could go on all day about him.
The one thing I want to share that really stuck in my mind is about a friend of his who asked him out to eat - and he declined for no real good reason.  He just didn't feel like going.  A week later that friend died.  Ed always kept that as a lesson to himself to be with his friends - often.
For that lesson he extended to me, I am thankful.  As I did not decline the last invitation.  Though it was several months ago now, I am grateful to have had that time with my dear friend.

I will miss the banter, I will miss the "big ass hugs" and I will miss his spirit and love for life.

So Ed, I throw back your immortal words... Next time I see you, you're going to get one big ass hug!

Ed, I love you and I will miss you.

Rest softly on the wings of angels dear friend... Or dance on the clouds.  It's all good.


This is the kind of person my friend, Ed was... This is from his Facebook page from Thanksgiving:

Edmund V Cussick III
November 22, 2012

A little reflection this Thanksgiving. I don't have a lot to show for my life, I'm 47yrs old, live in a small 3rm apartment and drive a 10yr old car. I've never aspired to greatness, and in that respect, I've been quite successful. Part of the reason is I can be lazy, the other part is I've always been pretty content with what I have. And most of my life, I've been more concerned with doing things rather than having things. I may not have a nice big house, but I've sat on the edge of the Grand Canyon and watched the sunrise, I've been to places all around the country that people come from all around the world to see, I've been to the Super Bowl, and many other great sporting events and concerts. And while I don't have a lot of money, I have something that all the money in the world can't buy-You. The love, (and hopefully), respect , of my family and friends, means more to me than any possession ever will. Without you, I am, and have nothing. But with you, I have more than I will ever need. So as you all gather with loved ones today and every day, Be thankful not for WHAT you have in your life, but WHO you have in your life. The people in your life will provide you with more joy, inspire you, and lift you higher than any money or things will. Have a Wonderfull Thanksgiving, and as always, I love you.

Friday, February 1, 2013

I'm turning into my father....That ROCKS!

That's a little weird, right??

Nah, not really since I'm speaking musically.  My dad?  BIG music buff.  He is the one who taught me the fundamentals.  The foundation of rock and roll.  What's "trippy" and what's well, not.  I grew up with a regular course of Jerry G & Roger W.
More specifically, Jerry Garcia from the Grateful Dead and Roger Waters from Pink Floyd not to mention Elvis, Clapton, the Beatles, my deep love for Zep, Bowie and the British invasion.

Hi, I'm Justin Bieber and I'm a tool.
Yes, my daddy was a hippie, a stoner and an amazing human being who loved music.  I'm proud to be "turning into my father."

This post, however, may not reflect so well on me or my dad - because I, like my dad, have become a music snob.  That's right, a snob.  While I am fairly open to most musical stylings,  I have NOT learned to love "the Biebs".  I think the comparison of him to Elvis is disgraceful and makes me want to vomit.

My friends, I have officially entered... the old people zone when it comes to my musical taste.

My parents were divorced, so I was a mighty weekend warrior to my dad's house.  It was cool.  No animosity, no bad vibes.  My dad, as I said, was an amazing human.  We spent a lot of time together and when we talked or even just hung around the house the music was always playing.  Mostly Pink Floyd.  I learned to love Pink Floyd and many of the other classic rock bands via my dad.  BUT -- drive time on Sunday night?  7 PM on CBS - the Doo Wop Shop.

I can feel my fingers moving toward eye poking now.

I could absolutely NOT stand the DooWop Shop.  Hated, hated, hated.  He loved it.  He'd be driving along in the car and he's say, "Jenny, you need to pay attention to this stuff this is ..... "  Whoever it was... And NO none of you may refer to me as Jenny.

I do the exact same thing with my girls in the car.

We'd be driving along and I throw on my 80's station and hear my Jenny 867-5309 and start jamming out while the girls are in the back seat rolling their eyes.  They want to hear their Z100 type pop station that makes me want to poke my eyes out with a stick.  They're in the back seat feeling the exact same way.

Oh wait, it gets worse.  At my son's graduation party - I had my iPod attached to the speakers on random shuffle.  One of my son's friends came into the room and said, "Oh, don't worry Mrs. C - I like to oldies too."   Ahhhh WHAT??

Is my beloved 80's music the new equivalent to the DooWop Shop??  Please tell me it's not true!

Yes, sorry to say.  I think I do.
I have to stop for a second and admit .. the very best music did NOT hail from the 80's.  After all, ya know, Boy George... Nuff said there.  I do lean more toward my classic rock stations, but I also listen to Country every morning and Pop and the Dance music and Hard Metal stations as well when the mood strikes.  I do, I swear I do... Yet, when it comes to battle with my daughter over today's Pop - she beats me every time.

What I'm really getting at here... in the eyes of my child, I have become musically UNCOOL!  At least when it comes to this genre of music.  While she may "who's this?" at me when Sir Paul (Beatles) comes on the radio -- I am "who's this?" ing at her when Philip Philip Philip Philips comes on the radio.  Scratch that - I know who he is because he sounds like Dave Matthews...  Let's try, ummmmm  Bruno Mars.  What the heck is a Bruno Mars?  Or.. Ooh, Ooh - that chick that sings "I just met you, and this is crazy, but here's my number - call me maybe?"  I have more fun saying "Here's my wine glass.  Go fill it maybe."

Yeah new pop on the radio?  Deer in the headlights.  No flipping clue!  I just don't know.

I'm not totally closed off to new music.  I do listen to newer rock and country - I just don't like today's Pop. I feel like I'm perpetually tuned into the Disney Channel.  Anyone else?

Feed me Zep and Bruce and Bon Jovi, always Pink Floyd and Bowie.  Keep me far, far away from the Biebs.  Please.

I get it dad -- I do, really get it.  I am slowly turning into my father musically.

Heck, it could be worse - it could be my mother... Bee Gees or Olivia Newton John anyone?  No??  OK

Have Rockin' Day!!

Thank you for reading my blog!