When it gets to this time of the week I always get excited about the upcoming Saturday. Although this Saturday is no exception, and even as I anticipate a perfect day filled with a much needed sleep in, no commute and catching up with friends, I know this day will be bittersweet. Yes, I will be enjoying all of these aforementioned activities, but it would only qualify as perfect if I were able to buy my friend Imants a pint for his birthday.
Imants was pretty much a fixture in my life for twenty-five years. I can't think of a wedding or a party or a show when Imants wasn't there. I remember him at Leslie & Dan's wedding when he gave me a ride home in a freak snowstorm and I can still hear him laugh at me walking up my front steps in a dress & heels with snow up above my knee. I remember him at Liz's 25th birthday laughing when we all dressed up and she squirted him in the face with silly string. I remember him laughing at me when we went to see The Cramps and I held on to Imant's shoulders while I jumped up and down to check out Lux Interior who had spontaneously stripped naked and I wanted to get a better look.
Yep--that laugh. That goofy laugh. How many times in twenty five years did we try to mimic it? How we miss it so. How we miss you so. We took you for granted. You were the mate who was always there. Now that you are gone, your missing presence is palpable.
I'm not a person who believes in an after life, but it gives me comfort to think that if we are not buying you pints on your birthday, you are somewhere having pints with Joey Ramone, Joe Strummer & Lux Interior...and they are all trying to mimic your laugh.