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Monday, October 18, 2004
I found out an old friend and colleague of mine dropped dead of a heart attack on Saturday. From what I've been told it was very sudden and quick.
A quick death is a good thing, he probably didn't even know what was happening to him. We should all be so lucky when our time comes.
I hadn't seen him in just over 2 years, but then I haven't seen anyone else either really.
I'd known him around 10 years, which in hippy-terms is a lengthy time indeed. We worked together, drank together, partied together, chased women together, even travelled together...at one point he was one of my best mates.
He'd become a father twice in the last couple of years, he'd settled down with the mother of his children. He was only around 50 years old, which kids, ain't really that old at all.
A sudden death is hardest to deal with, as there is no time to prepare yourself. I was only mentioning to a friend of mine last week that I wanted to get in touch with him. Too late now, hippy.
I'm numb, dumbfounded but not all together surprised; he didn't live the healthiest lifestyle. He enjoyed a drink, a bacon butty or two and he really loved chips but most of all he really dug cocaine.
You don't often get the hippy being negative about drugs, so pay close attention.
My friend was a proper, old school cokehead. He did charlie the way I smoke weed, from the moment he woke up straight through until bedtime. He always had a runny or bloody nose, sometimes you'd even clock a bit of powder falling out of his nostrils during the day at work. He was hardcore.
He did lots, he did it often, I think it killed him. I'm almost certain it did.
If you wanna do coke now and then that’s your business, but anything in excess will fuck you right up, especially charlie. It's heavy duty on your system and heart attacks are not an unknown or uncommon side-effect. Just drop by any A&E on a Saturday night and you’ll see what I mean.
My friend probably did it daily for maybe 15-20 years. That’s serious abuse, it's bound to catch up with you.
I'll admit, I did coke with him on countless occasions, so I'm the last one to preach about not doing it at all. But I'll give you one word: moderation.
A little now and then probably won't kill you, but a lot all the time most likely will. I haven't had any in just over 2 years and though the thought of having some does make me salivate somewhat, I decided a back then I was off it for good. My friend's death only reinforces that pledge.
I wish I could say that I'd seen him recently, but no, that didn't happen. I did try to stay in touch with him, but not very successfully. Of all the people I've known, worked with, hung out with in the last years, he's easily one of my favourites. I would have said that about before he died; I'm not saying it now just because he's gone.
I'm getting really tired of writing about death. I'm getting really tired of people I love and care about dying. I'm just getting tired. The words “life is too short” take on a special meaning whenever someone younger dies. Make the most of everyday, and yes I should fucking take my own goddamn advice.
Here's to you my friend, I learned so much from you, professionally and personally. You brought loads of laughs to everyone you knew; you were always at the center of the fun! If there's a heaven, you'll be behind the bar with your dad, serving up pints and short and jokes and songs. You touched a lot of people's lives here and we're all better for knowing you. Peace, man.