Saturday, October 15, 2011

Goodbye To All That

June 6, 2011
The High Line
Our last picture together

A blog post would probably have mortified him. But I need somewhere to click when I'm thinking of him. What I wrote for his memorial service:

I was born an only child. And when I was 23 I met the older brother I'd always wanted.
I had moved into an apartment that happened to be above a restaurant called Commune and as part of their be-nice-to-our-neighbors campaign, I was met every time I came in by a 6'4" grinning manager holding out a glass of champagne.
Needless to say, I was hooked.
Over the years, Jed and I have been friends, co-conspirators, honorary siblings and even roommates.
To say he was not the cleanest person I know is something of an... understatement.
He's done a million nice things for me:
Like running a new pipe for my bathroom sink and working til 5am so it would be ready when I woke up. Demoing a wall I wanted removed so I wouldn't have to pay someone to do it. Even meeting me at the nail salon with a glass of already poured wine when I'd had a long day. The nail ladies loved him.
He's taught me a million things too.
Like how to squirt lighter fluid down steps so you can set them on fire and have the fire climb the steps. And how to tie a sled to a golf cart so you can sled behind it when it snows. And how to then explain to my mother that a most unfortunate thing may or may not have happened to her golf cart and that we may or may not be responsible for it...
Jed loved to built forts in the living room and he loved to make charcuterie plates up to entice me to watch wacky movies with him. He loved to go out for a night on the town and he loved coming to stay with my family and me in Maine where he became the son my parents never knew they were missing. He and dad could watch Top Gear and listen to Car Talk. He would regale us with the story of Curtis the Tortoise EVERY SINGLE TIME a turtle or tortoise or childhood pet was brought up in conversation - for those of you who don't know it, every year Nan would release Curtis the Tortoise into the garden for the Winter with his phone # written on his back in nail polish. Lo and behold, he always returned in Spring.Jed loved to use truffle oil on pretty much anything he cooked. If he was coming with you for karaoke you were destined to hear some Neil Diamond. Jed adored playing Resident Evil and he loved all things zombie. He could get obsessed with buying things on ebay which resulted in a ton of Schlitz beer belt buckles, J Crew role neck sweaters and various pairs of Frye boots. He was gifted a stuffed loon once that made a loon-call so he and I developed our Loon Dance. We called each other Pup as a nickname and sometimes he called me Pilar. I have no idea why but I'd answer. He had the best sense of humor ever and always got the joke. He loved walking on the High Line and I am so glad the last picture I have of the 2 of us was from this summer as we sat there in the sun.

I turned 35 on Monday and I'm still going to be thinking of things I wish I could tell him when I turn 95. Jed would have been 36 yesterday and I don't think I'll ever completely accept we won't be having another joint birthday party. I don't think I'll ever completely believe his crazy laugh isn't a phone call away. But... for the rest of my life I will lift a glass - champagne, of course - and toast to my brother on our birthday week and doubtlessly many other weeks as well. If everyone could think of him when they first sip their next cocktail he'd be thrilled and it would be a most fitting tribute.

Cheers to the Peelester!

Death is a challenge. It tells us not to waste time.
It tells us to tell each other right now that we love each other.
-Leo Buscaglia