Sunday, May 21, 2006


He should be called JOY.

I fortuitously reconnected with Joe, my college boyfriend's roommate, a couple of years ago. We met in Lincoln, Nebraska in 1986, and now I live in New York and he lives in DC. I detected him on Friendster two years ago and after an unconscionably long separation, we renewed our friendship with a drink at the Plaza and dinner at Orso. Since then we have kept in touch via email. Thank God for the Internet!

Last weekend, my beloved friend Thomas graduated from Georgetown with an MFA. I cannot even express how delighted and proud I am about his achievements. Over a dozen people flew in from points west to celebrate with him, and my friend Jill and I took the Greyhound bus from NYC to DC to whoop it up with our Omaha peeps. When I called Joe to see if he wanted to hook up, he was so excited to see me, he offered to pick us up at the station and provide me and Jill (whom he had never met) a place to stay for the weekend.

Joe showed up at the bus station in his tiny Audi coupe (human origami was required for the person in the "back seat" = "shoe box"), and he drove us with a flourish to the art gallery where the party for Thomas was being held. After helpfully unfolding us he then proceeded to accompany me and Jill into a party where he literally knew NO ONE, charmed every soul, enjoyed himself thoroughly, and then when the party ended kidnapped me and Jill to a tremendously cool and fun little bar for more laughter and conversation. We were then magically transported back to his impossibly hip house, and put to bed in one of the most comfortable beds upon which I have ever slept.

In the morning, we were charmingly plied with delicious French press coffee, and had the delightful task of exploring one of the most delicious, tasteful, interesting, and amusing homes I've ever been in. And then there's the sweet friendly dog, DEVO. And the yard sale the neighbors were having, and the beautiful park across the street. Joe's yard is full of clover and I made a fairy circlet for Jill's beautiful curly red hair.

Joe then poured us into his tiny car and took us away for brunch. We sat outside in the sun at a quaint Belgian cafe, drank Bloody Marys and ate crepes, and for an hour or so were the happiest and most delightful people on the planet. It was sheer bliss. When we left our server thanked us and called us "my favorite brunch party of the day." By the way Jill - thanks for brunch!

Then we were chauffeured back to the bus station. Hugs, kisses, and promises of eternal friendship were exchanged on all sides.

There were so many good deeds of the weekend - all the wonderful people who came such a distance to celebrate with Thomas; my friend Jill and I deciding to support each other in our desire to show up; my darling Fernando taking care of Connor so I could go; Thomas himself, doing such a good deed FOR HIMSELF by pursuing his dreams; the bus drivers, in both directions, paying attention so that all the passengers could sleep, or talk, or read, and reach our destinations safely without paying any attention to the road.

But the biggest and most noticeable gift of the weekend was the generosity and love of my old friend, who is so wonderfully kind and funny. His cheeky, mischievous, loving, wise, tasteful, honest, good-hearted, sarcastic, impudent, and witty soul delights me no end. He made everything lovely. Thank you sweetheart!


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