I am watching an extraordinary man (my crush Stephen Colbert 😉 while writing about an extraordinary evening with another extraordinary man talking about a third extraordinary man. Do I feel extraordinarily privileged? You betcha 😉
I wrote about my friend Sean last year. Ideally I would love to never have to write about death but I am at that age where it is no longer possible. And one needs to figure out how to deal…
It’s the first anniversary of my friend Sean’s death. It’s a tough day. Life offers few magic bullet solutions and death is one of the most elusive and slipperiest quandaries we have to figure out how to cope with and work through.
I am one of those super analytical, make a plan, and get it done kind of people so death has stumped me. You can’t analyze it, you can’t blame anyone and there is no five point or five year plan to set up and work your way through.
Time helps… and heals. Mostly you have to figure out what works for you. For me, it’s about celebrating and talking about the person you no longer have an opportunity to hug in the flesh.
I always look for something unique that resonates for me at least as being part of the person’s identity so it becomes a tribute to his life and personality. So, tonight it was C restaurant with his best friend drinking Veuve Cliquot champagne in Prada shoes and celebrating his life and toasting his memory.
As I wrote last year, Sean changed my life and my perspective on life in such a profound way that it is impossible to imagine my life without his youthful influence. His life was so extraordinary it almost sounds like something you made up. But it was real. He led a celebrity lifestyle without being written about in the tabloids.
He conquered Toronto, then New York and finally London. But he was a guy from Niagara Falls so he brought all his friends with ordinary lives along for the journey. He was incredibly generous and he blew your mind and expanded your horizons and shared all his new experiences and insights.
He was so ordinary and so extraordinary all at the same time that it took many years before I ever even began to appreciate the extraordinary impact he had had on my life.
Like everyone who knew him, I wish there had been more time, more experiences, more hugs. But all we can do is remember the great times. Toting his son around in a baby basket in Vancouver while I learned how you cook sweetbreads… attending one of his daughter’s wonderful birthday parties in London… going on a jaunt to France for dinner in a Michelin star restaurant…
There were so many incredible experiences… so many great times… so much fun.
It’s the important thing to remember when all you have is the memories. Tonight was extraordinary and I know Sean was there sipping the Veuve with us. And commiserating with Phil, our server, who had lost a friend on the anniversary of his death.
Life and death are both mysterious, crazy adventures. What really matters is that we share them with people who matter to us. Who challenge us. Who inspire us. Phil was drinking Guinness in honour of his friend. We were drinking Veuve. A toast to Sean – and all the extraordinary impact he had on my life.