Saturday, July 30, 2011

Death Of An Amigo From Long Ago

I was advised by a Facebook group who are friends with each other that an old friend, and for a semester my college roommate had just died.

Over the past couple of years I have had a fair number of people I know who have died, now a second one who was roughly my age.  Some of these deaths have really stung...

David Thompson was starting his first year at Rice U., and that first semester we were roommates.  David and I would on occasion have conversations, after we had agreed to go to bed and turned the lights out, there in the dark.  Many of these conversations would be about religion and related topics.  Dave was from Tennessee, had not gotten out much before coming to Rice (Houston, TX) and was trying to integrate his views with the wider ranging reality he came to see in the big city, away from home.  He was in many ways a perfect gentleman.  He was enthusiastic and participated in many things (most of which I did not).

Dave had a tougher life after I lost touch with him.  Pretty bad.  He was unable to finish getting a degree or being able to hold down a steady job, through no fault of his own.  He died while being cared for in a special home...

After Ron C there at Facebook (whom I do not know) confirmed that it was indeed "our" David Thompson, I shared my thoughts with the group.  Lately, I have taken up a new way to remember people, and to help others remember or better know that person by sharing anecdotes about my friend(s) that no one else knows...  I shared the below (snippet, my anecdote is the second paragraph) with the Facebook group:

He was, in essence, a perfect gentleman.  I regret hearing about his difficult and challenging life later on.  But, while I knew him, his enthusiasm and good heart made me happy in his company.  "Happiness in someone's company" is the best definition of a friend I have encountered.

Let me share an anecdote.  Some of you may know I was terrible at winning the the affection of any girls there at Rice, "I couldn't even get a girl to break my heart" (stolen from Sean Hannity).  Well, one evening down in the Pub, I was talking with two Rice girls.  The three of us happened to like Pink Floyd, and I had most of their records and had a cheapie stereo there at our room.  I invited them to come up and "listen to Pink Floyd in the dark."  They accepted, and we went to my room.  I opened the door, and there was Dave, studying...  I sort-of pulled rank on him and asked if he would like to abandon whatever it was he was doing and join us in listening to Pink Floyd, which I imagine he was familiar with as I played their music often.  He said OK, and so for maybe an hour or so we, the four of us, listened to Pink Floyd.  The Rice ladies then went along their way, and not much became of that (a little, at a later time, but not much).

I once told my friend Mike Connell (also not graduated from Rice, would have been 1978, Will Rice) that story.  He laughed and LOVED it!  He thought that was a great line: "Hey, baby, want to come up to my room and listen to Pink Floyd in the dark?"

David Thompson!  In pace recquiescat.  Those of us who knew you will always remember you with fondness.  RIP, my old friend, and to apparently many of us as well.

R A Mix

Indeed Dave, although it has been a long time, I am remembering you today...  Indeed In Pace Recquiescat...  I use the Latin, not to be a snob, but because Latin is OLD, old ideas are the ones that endure...  "There is nothing new under the sun." -- Ecclesiastes

Below song is sung by Amber Rae, it is Jerry Jeff Walker's song.  Some of you saw J.J.W. at the plantation there in SC when my brother brought him in for that charity event several years ago.  "Little Bird" is probably my favorite of his songs...

"Picture of my face on the window pane,
Is it tears I see or is it rain?"

Little Bird ~ by Amber Rae

Originally performed by Jerry Jeff Walker. This one's for daddy.

1 comment:

  1. Sorry to hear of your loss, Robert. My Mom always said the pain of loss reflects the love we had.
    Brought be a bit of comfort at the time..


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