Thursday, January 24, 2008


detail from oil pastel - Distant light

Yesterday I surprised an old friend with a phone call. It has been at least 15 years since we last saw one another and it was oh so grand to hear his voice again. Pat is one of the few people I know that can make me laugh just by thinking about him. I love talking to him; I know I will laugh and that he will, in turn, bring out the comic in me. I think we share a gene for a specific sense of humor, or perhaps we simply disarm one another; whatever the reason, it is impossible to talk with Pat and not feel good ( similar to my experiences with my high school classmate, Stanley).

One day, while working in the ER, I called Pat and told him to come down to see me. I had a poster I created of our local Italian Festival that I wanted to give him. He did, and during our talk he mentioned the chest pain he had been experiencing. The more we talked about it the more concerned I became, and eventually I urged him to sign in as a patient so I could run a few studies. Fortunately the EKG and blood work were normal and we both felt relieved. I saw him a few weeks later and he said “...Jesus Bill, that free poster cost me over $300.00 in ER bills!”, and we both laughed. At least I THINK he laughed.

Our relationship was limited to doctor-patient and work place encounters. The friendship did not extend beyond that. Thinking about it now I realize what I may have missed out on, the opportunity to develop a deeper relationship with a person I liked and admired. And more than that, to have as a dear and close friend someone who makes you laugh and feel good is truly a blessing. Friends like Pat and Stanley should never be taken for granted. I am grateful for the time I have been able to spend with them.

1 comment:

dog face girls said...

Friends are soo important. Hope you are feeling better.

Hugs to you my friend,