Rose Parade

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Saturday, December 17, 2005

R.I.P. my Uncle Bob

After a lifetime of ingesting way too much alcohol, drugs and cigarettes and a good decade plus of seriously deteriorating health, my Uncle Bob died this morning at the age of 59. It was a sad, far cry from his early years as a seriously brainy guy (according to my Dad, who thinks Bob could have gotten into Mensa if he had been so inclined) and a 300 bowler whose perfect game plaque, hanging in my Grandma's house in Arcadia was one of the few but significant constants of my life as part of a fractured and factional family...and one of the few memories Bob happily recalled with surprising crystal clarity when my Dad and I visited him in the convalescent home on Thanksgiving. The things people are God-gifted with and the things they do or don't do with those gifts... Bob was always one of those people (and there are others) who never fail to make me consider and marvel about how much abuse the human body can take and still keep marching along. In his situation I would have willingly clocked out years ago. I'm all about quality and not quantity of life. The day I can't just get up and walk across the room is the day I call it quits. He started painfully gimping across the room years ago. My Dad saw him this morning right after he died and said he hadn't seen him looking so peaceful in at least ten years. He also said it just looked like he was asleep. And as sad as the loss is, sometimes it's just better for someone to just go to sleep...and stay there. Doesn't make it any sadder and doesn't mean it doesn't leave a void, but sometimes the hard thing is the best thing that can happen. When my time comes I hope I just go to sleep. Sleep is just so peaceful, you know?

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