|Me and Dude|
February 21st, 2005 is the day my grandfather died. I don’t like February 21st very much. Staying in bed all day seems like a great option at times.
It was a Monday night and I was watching my favorite show, “24”. I was living in Colorado at the time. I knew getting a phone call after 8pm from my Mom was not a good sign but I truthfully never dreamed I would hear the words, “He’s gone, Chanin. There was nothing they could do. It was a massive heart attack.”
I hung up the phone and vomited in the kitchen sink. My best friend was gone and I didn’t even get to say good-bye.
We all called him “Papa.” For some reason, I started calling him Dude. I walked into work one day after my college classes and he said, “Hey Dude, what are you up to?” It made me smile. We called each other Dude ever since.
My parents had divorced when I was 9, my dad was in Tennessee and we lived in Oklahoma. Papa was essentially my dad. He taught me how to drive, how to work and be responsible, how to gamble (one of our favorite things to do together was to bet on football games), how to cook a mean steak and how to play golf. The impact this man had on my life is really hard to put into words.
I think about and miss him every single day. This day is just a little more difficult than the others. But I know one of these days I will see him again and he will say, “Dude, what have you been up to?” And I will smile.