Saturday, November 20, 2010

Remembering an Old Friend

Image of David Mills from FacebookImage of David Mills
I woke up this morning and as is my custom, I picked up my BlackBerry to check email.  There was an alert on it to remind me that today would have been David Mills' 49th birthday.  When I fired up my laptop and headed over to Facebook, I was reminded again, both from a birthday alert and posts expressing their remembrance of him on this day.

David along with Donald Valyou were my two best friends from high school and college.  We were on It's Academic together in high school, we carpooled together in college, and we went out most Friday and Saturday nights for a few beers in college.  Like most people, careers and the years allowed us to drift apart and we lost touch with one another.

Over the years, I thought about my two friends often.  While there is a lot to be critical of in regards to social media, it is through social media that I was able to reconnect with my two old friends.  I first connected with David through the professional network LinkedIn, and then through Facebook.  We both later reconnected with Donald through Facebook.

After we reconnected, we were able to meet a couple of times when David came back to Maryland from California.  We were able to go to dinner together at Ledo's for pizza and then to a baseball game at the Bowie Baysox.  It was through Facebook that I was alerted to his sudden passing on March 31, 2010 when I received a message from Donald.

On this day, I want to share a memory of a particular birthday of David's.  At that time, the legal age for drinking beer and wine in Maryland was 18.  Donald and I were born a couple days apart.  David was 
a little more than 8 months younger than the two of us.  Since David could not get into bars, Donald or I would buy beer and we would get together at one of our homes to drink beer and debate.

31 years ago today, was the first day that David was legally able to go out for beer.  We had seen flyers around campus for a bar near campus that held wet t-shirt contests.  In honor of David's 18th birthday, we decided to head out to Yesterday's Inn for a few beer and some wet t-shirts.  Turns out that they were no longer holding the contests and it was strictly a topless bar.  We sat in a corner booth and spent more time debating philosophy and social issues than watching the dancers.

That was typical of our relationship.  Even after all the years that had passed, when we got together over a year ago, it was like we never had been apart.  The discussions were lively and friendly.  I think about David often.  There is never a bad memory associated with him, unless you count having so much beer that you ended up throwing up.  I really miss him.
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  1. The loss of good friends always leaves an ache.

  2. yes it does, but the memories of the good times remain

  3. I lost some childhood friends with the damn heroin. I understand what you are feeling.



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