Burning The Black Candle At Both Ends

We're getting to the age where far too many of our friends and acquaintances from our generation are starting to disappear.

Our friend Jan Lockett passed away in late January.  Back in the mid-1970's, Hilde and her then-husband moved to Tucson, which was where that husband walked out on Hilde and their son.  Jan was one of the Tucson people who gave Hilde support in that trying time.  When Jan was enthusiastic about something, she could be very enthusiastic. ("Excited puppy" is the phrase that comes to mind.)  This last year, she'd had a series of medical emergencies and complications that really made it difficult to maintain that enthusiasm.

Don Markstein passed away last week.  Don and I became acquainted when we were both publishing fanzines in the 1970's.  Don enjoyed being an iconoclast, a gadfly, a devil's advocate.  Sometimes he got too close to, or even stepped over, the line between "gadfly" and 'troublemaker".  But he was witty and funny, and I liked him.  I'm sorry we had, except for the occasional brief encounters at conventions, pretty much fallen out of touch. 

And I got the news yesterday that my cousin Linda had passed away.  She'd been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor last year, so the news wasn't all that much a surprise.  Linda was loud and brassy and sometimes vulgar, but she was also one of those relatives who act as a glue for the rest of the relations.  It was frequently her place where family get-togethers took place, for Christmas and other occasions.  I'll miss her.

It's hard to keep a positive attitude about growing older when so much bad news comes along with it. 

(I've said it before, but: "The Golden Years: They Kinda Suck".  Perhaps I should have that put on a t-shirt.)

(photo by Vassil, from Wikimedia Commons)

1 comment:

Magaly Guerrero said...

Life is so strange, and death, too, I guess.

I ran into your blog while searching for black candles to light in memory of a Marine friend died a few days ago. It seems like just a month ago I celebrated his return from Iraq, and so few years ago we celebrated our joined promotion... and now he is gone. Life happens so fast, doesn't it? And in such similar ways, even between individuals who have never met.

Hope the souls of your friends and your cousin travel to the places they always dreamed of while in life.