Tuesday, April 26, 2016

"JM - 23"

From OrbsCorbs.com:

"Best Friend"
"I met my best friend in the summer of 1972 (I think) at my wife-to-be's birthday party on Zoo Beach.  I was with another woman at the time.  Years later, he'd be the best man at my wedding and I at his.  For most of the time I knew him, he lived mostly in Milwaukee.  His then girlfriend was best friends with my wife-to-be.

"I can't begin to describe all of the nonsense and fun we got into.  Everyone knew we were best friends.

"My favorite memory of him was when he lived on N. Weil St. in a basement apartment in one of the coldest winters ever with a borrowed guitar amplifier the size of a Buick.  We'd drink at nearby bars until closing and then go to his apartment.  Man, was it cold.  And then we would blast the night away with some of the loudest noise you ever heard.  Not one peep of complaints from the other tenants. (?)  And we did this repeatedly, all winter long.

"I could go on sand on with stories about us, but let's just say that we considered ourselves to be brothers, and I still do.  I'll never forget when he visited me at my mother's home near the bottom of my drinking.  He said, 'Orbs, I'll buy you drinks all day long, but don't make we watch you kill yourself.'

"Anyway, fast forward through recovery and sobriety.  We stayed friends.  He and his wife (not the girlfriend I mentioned earlier) bought a house on the cusp of the housing boom.  They got a nice brick home near Capitol Dr. and N. 76th St. There's a school nearby and a huge park.

"Fast forward again to about 2005 and my mother's home is sold.  She and my father never bought, just rented.  Mom had lived in the same place for over 60 years.  Now she had to move.  She did it.  As my friend used to say, 'She's a tough old bird.'

"I was using her garage to store a ton of stuff.  Over the years, I had emptied and refilled her garage three times.  Anyway, there was an old wooden trailer in there that I had to find a new home for.  It was fall and I knew that the trailer would fetch a better price in the spring.  That winter the trailer spent the season behind the garage of the apartment building I was living in.

"Here's where it gets fuzzy, but I don't remember why I didn't sell the trailer.  Somehow, it was decided that I would tow it up to my friend's house and leave it wrapped in tarps and chained to a tree.  It spent four or five yeas there.  Meanwhile, I developed my major stomach problems that took 4 years out of my life.

"Early one summer, my friend called me and asked me to remove the trailer.  I said, 'Sure,' but I talked to his wife and told her how sick I was.  She said don't worry, he has plenty of other things to do.  This happened four or five times.  Then one evening I received a telephone call from my friend using a tone of voice I had never heard before.  It was obvious he was seething with rage, all of it directed at me.  I was to remove the trailer immediately.  I said I'd be there the next day.  When I asked him if there was air in the tires, he screamed at me, 'How the hell should I know?' and he hung up.

"Of course when the next day arrived, I was puking and puking my guts out.  I called and left a message on my friend's answering machine saying I couldn't make it that day because I was going to the ER (which I did).  I told him to give away the trailer, sell it, pay someone to tow it, whatever, get it done and let me know the costs, if any.  The next day I called again and repeated my willingness to pay for things.

:I never heard from or saw him again.  38 years of friendship, down the tubes.  Once I realized the finality of it, it was devastating.  The only thing I could compare it to was when I broke up with my wife.  A huge chunk of me died when that happened.  So much so, that many thought I was a dead man for sure.

"I'd say that breaking up with my wife killed half of me and losing my friend killed a quarter.  There's not too much left.  Better get your shots in while you can.

"It's one of those things that you never really recover from.  You have to walk around it because you can't walk through it.

"The recent loss of some friends left me staggering once more.  This pattern has followed me since childhood.  I get to know someone or some people, and then I move on.  It's obvious that I don't know how to relate to people.  Most importantly, I can't 'read' people.  I take people at their word.  I'm an absolute idiot that way.  64 years old and naive as a three year old.  Something's missing.  Something's broken. I've never been able to fix it, nor has anyone else. I'm a born loser 

"As for my 'best' friend, the last I heard, he was in the Elkhart Lake area, but I don't know.  Wherever he is, whatever he is doing., I wish him peace.  I love him and I miss him dearly."



OrbsCorbs said...

Blogger OrbsCorbs said...

Another take on friendship: last night this guy I know (hereafter referred to as TGIK) and I were having a conversation about friendship, considering the recent turmoil online here, elsewhere, and in my head. What's the difference between an acquaintance and a friend?

TGIK said he was on trial once and the judge asked him if he was a friend of a certain individual. TGIK knew the guy. They had even hung out together for awhile a decade ago. But nothing recently. TGIK asked the judge what she meant by "friend." She replied, "Do you socialize with him?" "Oh, no," said TGIK.

Is that the test of friendship?

April 26, 2016 at 5:25 AM

OrbsCorbs said...

Blogger Tender Heart Bear said...

We are your friend and your family and we will always be here for you. We do not plan on going anywhere on you. I know how hard everything is for you if you need to talk call us.

April 26, 2016 at 11:01 AM

OrbsCorbs said...

Blogger OrbsCorbs said...

Thank you, THB.

April 26, 2016 at 3:25 PM

OrbsCorbs said...

The above three comments appear at the original post in OrbsCorbs.com at this time.


OKIE said...

Orbs, even if we are not there physically, we are still your friends. We are still here for you. I'll be your friend for the next 38 years. I'll be 99 then and we can get on our computers and relive the good times. At that age we will probably be telling the same stories everyday but we won't remember so it will be okay.

Who would have thought a few years ago a bunch of people from all over would get together and have good times. Another chapter for all of us.

Thank you for being my friend.

OrbsCorbs said...

Thank you for being my friend, OKIE.

lizardmom said...

I'm glad for those I've met thanks to this new fangled internet. Who would have thought years ago, that friendships could happen thru our computers. I'm so glad for my family here, each and every one. You'll all like my brothers and sisters. I was on the phone with a friend from grade school yesterday. We reminisced about friends and how life changes. Real friends are always there for each other. We hadn't talked in a couple decades, just lost track of each other and reconnected last year, when she found me again, thanks to my mom working out in her yard. Rose stopped by when she saw mom and got ahold of me. It's like we never lost touch. Real friend just always feel connected somehow

Toad said...

Orbs, My Best Friend, lives up North. Been several years since I have seen him. I call him every now and again, and shoot the shit. He doesn't have a computer? (go figure) anyhow, he's my Best Friend. Does he ever call me? NOPE. Do I really care NOPE. I know he Is my Best Friend, and until the day he somehow tell's me he Is NOT, he alway's will be. For years now WE have been friends. I haven't even met you, but we are friends because I said so. We will alway's be friends until you tell me were not. I don't call you, I don't expect anything from you, but we are friends. I don't respond to many of you're postings. SO WHAT, I don't respond to very many postings. I have actually become rather sick of typing. I don't read much either, but I did read you're Best Friend post. Actually I rather enjoyed It. Friends are weird. Sometimes you don't hear from them for what seems forever, and sometimes you can't get them to take a break. K, SA, RA. (phonetic) they are still friends, and will be until they tell you different. My advice, Play some of that OLD, COLD Milwaukee music, and BE HAPPY, you have FRIENDS.

Beejay said...

Ten years ago, I lost my best friend to cancer. Ten long years ago. What I would give to be able to have one of our "talks." Ten years the 26th of this month. The last day of her life, I sat at her bedside and talked about all of our adventures for hours and hours. She was in a coma.

Don't forsake friends. Try to bridge the gap.

Orbs, we care...

OrbsCorbs said...

Thank you everyone for your declarations of love and friendship toward me. Each one is a treasure I strive to maintain. But I fuck up. I'm mentally ill.

In posting this blog, I was hoping more to spur discussion on the nature of friendship. The judge set, "Do you socialize with him?" as the standard for friendship. Yet, obviously, we all don't socialize with each other.

I lost a very good friend from this site because I'm a shithead. So let's give this one 1/8 of me. That leaves only another 1/8 standing. I'm suicidal. I'll fuck up that 1/8, too.

lizardmom said...

friendship is hard to define, and may be different for different people. for me, it's a heart connection. when I care about people, I feel some kind of connection with them. It doesn't always mean lots of communication but true caring about them. When they hurt, I hurt. When they're happy, I'm happy. To know a friend is going thru something very difficult, I feel that as well and it's really hard.
I never expect my friends to be perfect, just as I hope they don't expect that of me, as I will let them down.