A friend may well be reckoned the masterpiece of Nature.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–82), writer
Some things are just more important than current events.
Most people don’t know what friendship is all about. To me having a friend is a pleasure and a treat, but I am always surprised by how many people don’t have close friends or make time for friends.
Of course, like everything else there always seem to be more bad friends than good friends. There are friends who show up when things are bad and their only reason for helping is really schadenfreude. Then, there are those who simply disappear and return when the trouble has passed. But, having a friend who has been with you through thick and thin and is not judgmental is a rarity indeed. I have been fortunate to have such a friend.
We met in the second semester of the 10th grade when we were grouped onto a misfit basketball team. Since that time, we have gone on long bike rides, learned how to drive around the same time, stayed in touch though we went to different colleges, taken myriad Las Vegas trips, attended countless baseball games, seen concerts from Sinatra to the Stones, watched boxing matches (we saw the Muhammad Ali fight against Ken Norton at the Great Western Forum in Los Angeles on a satellite feed or closed circuit screen), we camped, hiked, drove to other states, gone through marriages and heartbreaks and we have always been there to support each other.
We have had our fights too. Him yelling at me to go to sleep and let him drive. Me complaining because we had to sleep in the parking lot of a gas station because he was too stubborn to stop earlier.
When I hit rock bottom and was forced to live with my parents again, on my birthday that year, he came over to the house with a new mountain bike because my ex either sold my bike or allowed it to be stolen. When I needed money he was there with free-lance work. People are always amazed that we have not only been friends, but close friends throughout the years.
Today is On The Mark’s birthday and I want to wish him a most heartfelt birthday and all the best for years to come.