Kew Gardens’ Own Bob Dylan

In Memory of Al MayoAlMayo

There is an official obituary about our friend Al Mayo that was written in the *New York Daily News and it was very accurate. However, I just don’t want people to remember him that way alone. It feels wrong to me.

The person who died, from my childhood neighborhood, was a lovely man, an old friend that passed away in January. A friend of mine called to tell me the horrible news of Al’s suicide. This was no ordinary death, it was a violent, brutal, grisly death. I don’t want this kind soul, the friend of everybody to be known by his suicide, or his obituary instead of his life, his cheery personality, his effusive grin, his loving and peaceful self.

I refuse to think of him in any other way than the newspaper’s photo that was published. It was a wonderful photo (above) where he is grinning, a twinkle in his eye, kind and sweet.  Al was all about peace and love, not violence, not to anyone. In his last years his body was ravaged by cancer, he couldn’t eat, talk, swallow; he had no life, he took his life, violently.

He said hello to everyone and he was like a fixture in our neighborhood, you knew that if you walked around the block you would most probably see Al Mayo smiling, leaning against a store, grinning widely, resting on his cane.

He didn’t have an easy life, he lost part of his leg in a motorcycle accident when I was young so he was probably in his late teens but nothing stopped him. He accepted what happened and moved on. He would be smiling and talking and spreading good cheer to all the neighbors in our little town. His lifelong friends stayed his lifelong friends.

Everyone was utterly shocked by the news but my friends M. and H. and I were shaken at the news, not as much that he had committed suicide but how. For a very peaceful man, he committed death in a very violent way, making sure that no one else would be hurt. Al, only wanted to end his life, never anybody else’s life. He wouldn’t harm a soul.

Al had cancer for a few years, unbearable, painful cancer that left him unable to eat, to swallow, to lead a normal life. If Al couldn’t lead a life that was close to normal, there wasn’t any Al left, he tried so hard and went through so much.

Now this sweet soul, friend to everyone is gone forever. We will all miss you Al and we will always remember your bright, warm smile.  We will miss our own elected “mayor.” You were Kew Gardens’ own, Bob Dylan, that’s how important you were to us, will always be.

Al Mayo, Rest In Peace.

Special thanks to Harry Klein, my friend and best friend of Al Mayo.

*Click on photo for NY Daily News Article

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Dear Plinky Prompt: Did You Die?

P question

P question (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Is Plinky dead? I have tried to get prompts but I haven’t gotten any. When I try to use the search I get the oldest ones first and there is no way to see the new ones. I’m wondering… I asked the “support group” a question a few weeks back about using images that were recently advertised ( I was shocked but thrilled) and  ( I won’t mention any names) their reply was the weakest, most uncaring, and unresponsive answer I have ever read in my life. Basically it said, “Yeah, we said it but it’s not true, that’s the way it is, we aren’t trying to fix it and no effort is being made to fix it in the future, kind of like, ever.” That was my interpretation. This is the real answer in part “I’m afraid Plinky is not being actively developed — we don’t have any plans to make improvements other than fixing critical bugs to keep the service running. I know that is not the answer that you had wanted, though it is the transparent one. ” Actually, I prefer my answer. What exactly did this mean?

I started getting suspicious at that point. Since then, no prompts. I’m just saying it would have been nice to get the obituary. Did I miss it? Did anyone else get it? Gosh, was I the only one who didn’t get it? I’m not saying I can’t live without the prompts but they were fun (although not when they were repeating them for the fourth time in a short time period.) Hey, I could think of some prompts. How much are you going to pay me? I’m sure I could come up with better ones and more original ones than the ones you used.

Now, I fully admit, my computer is wonky, so it could be just me and that it’s just my  computer problem and Plinky Prompts are going to everyone else except me. Can one of my friends let me know? That is entirely possible.  Can someone at Plinky give me an update? It would be nice to get an email or some communication letting us know if you have dropped Plinky officially or if you are on a hiatus.

Sometimes we need a push and sometimes we need a break. What up?

Sincerely,

Hibernationnow.wordpress.com

Haiku Heights – Red

pink roses

pink roses (Photo credit: srqpix)

I saw blood, soaked, rags

flint made, exploding anger

Couple burst in flames.

***

The last page written

in smudged charcoal,  painter’s ink

news, her last good-bye.

***

Into the dark night

a bird whistle blows softly

Red and black beak cry.

***

A blush of pink rose

Happy Valentine’s Day, love

Just let me whisper.

Am I Just Too Old?

Facebook logo Español: Logotipo de Facebook Fr...

Facebook logo Español: Logotipo de Facebook Français : Logo de Facebook Tiếng Việt: Logo Facebook (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I miss the old days. Before computers and messages and Facebook. When people called each other on the telephone, you know the ones that hung from the wall in putrid yellow and green with curly, tangled cords. They conveyed news, good and bad. You were able to preface things with either hesitation if it was bad news or words that conveyed your discomfort. Good news was easy, people could tell by the lilt of your excited voice. It doesn’t happen that way anymore. I found out about a friend’s death on Facebook. FACEBOOK. It’s true, and it says a lot about society at least to old-fashioned me.

I’m not saying we were best friends and that we had lunch together every week but in the old days when I grew up there was a phone chain. At least you could get a phone call from someone who knew someone and there was that one moment of preparation when an unfamiliar voice would ask to speak to you somewhat hesitantly……You got the needling sensation in your stomach that something was just not right and even though you can never really be prepared, at least you had a gut feeling.

I got the message, as others did, in black and white print, in the form of a lovely, well-written memorial (Thank you, Roland in no way is this a criticism of YOU.)  Couldn’t someone have sent a mailing at least to soften the blow? I guess not, that’s not the way society works these day. I should catch up with the future, I’m just not sure if I can.

I’m still in shock. Truly, I can’t grasp that my friend is dead, maybe because I only had a hint that she was sick. I knew she was in pain once when I saw her but I didn’t know from what; everyone has a bad day now and then. Although I sensed something was wrong when she snapped at me once; that was so not like her at all.  It was pure intuition that made me feel something was  off, nothing else.

Reading her eulogy in print has not given me time to acclimate to the news. Her own Facebook page is still up, with her own heavenly smile lighting up her page.  I’m not sure how to deal with this, there is nothing I can do except get used to the idea she is gone. Having no information makes it worse.

I’ve said good-bye to Helen in my heart and I know that’s all I can do. But finding out about someone’s death on Facebook? That’s got to be a new low. At least for me.