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For my friend Schoeff

 
aintnomoretime
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User ID: 804818
United States
10/28/2009 07:57 AM
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For my friend Schoeff
A good friend of mine died a few weeks ago. He posted here under the name Schoeff. Maybe you know of him, maybe you don’t. He really liked this place, though.

He didn’t have much in the way of what is normally called friends, and he was somewhat alienated from his family. His parents disapproved of most of his life: his choice of jobs, his choice of friends { :/ }, his lifestyle. At his memorial service was me and my ex. His parents came in from Missouri and his boss flew in from Portland, Oregon. That was it.
Until what seemed to be a mob of homeless people showed up. I swear there had to be a couple dozen of them. His parents and boss were pissed, but I told the funeral director to let them in.

They were from the local mission where Schoeff spent quite a bit of his free time. One by one they stood in front and talked about him. They called him Chip.
(I asked some of them later why they called him that and most just thought it was his name, or nickname. A couple of the long-term residents of the mission, though, said some of the women thought he looked like a Chippendale dancer; hence, Chip.)
Many of them said simple things like, “he always made me feel good” or “he was full of love and hope”. But two stood up and told lengthy stories about how he gave them confidence and hope, how because of him they were now back on their feet with a job, a place to live and a light for the future.
The director of the mission (a baptist preacher) arrived and talked a little about him. Among other things, he said that though Schoeff was not a religious man and felt that Schoeff was missing something from his life, he still did God’s work. Said he was an angel.

Well, he was hardly an angel in the classic sense of the word. He wouldn’t have appreciated being called one, either. But he was a good friend; the best friend anyone could have. I’ve been thinking about him a lot and looking back over the 20+ years I’ve known him. I’m glad I’ve always been aware of how fortunate I am that I had him in my life, and that he allowed me into his.

I love you, Charlie. I miss you.



[link to www.youtube.com]

I was coming to the end of a long long walk
When a man crawled out of a cardboard box
Under the E. Street Bridge
Followed me on to it
I went out halfway across
With that homeless shadow tagging along
So I dug for some change
Wouldn't need it anyway
He took it looking just a bit ashamed
He said, You know, I haven't always been this way

I've had my moments, days in the sun
Moments I was second to none
Moments when I knew I did what I thought I couldn't do
Like that plane ride coming home from the war
That summer my son was born
Memories like a coat so warm
A cold wind can't get through
Looking at me now you might not know it
But I've had my moments

I stood there trying to find my nerve
Wondering if a single soul on Earth
Would care at all
Miss me when I'm gone
That old man just kept hanging around
Looking at me, looking down
I think he recognized
That look in my eyes
Standing with him there I felt ashamed
I said, You know, I haven't always been this way

I've had my moments, days in the sun
Moments I was second to none
Moments when I knew I did what I thought I couldn't do
Like the day I walked away from the wine
For a woman who became my wife
And a love that, when it was right,
Could always see me through
Looking at me now you might not know it
I've had my moments

I know somewhere 'round a trashcan fire tonight
That old man tells his story one more time
He says

I've had my moments, days in the sun
Moments I was second to none
Moments when I knew I did what I thought I couldn't do
Like that cool night on the E. Street Bridge
When a young man almost ended it
I was right there, wasn't scared a bit
And I helped to pull him through
Looking at me now you might not know it
Oh, looking at me now you might not know it
I've had my moments

Sorry for the long post.
You can't have a light without a dark to stick it in.
-- Arlo Guthrie
Your friend is the man who knows all about you, and still likes you.
-- Elbert Hubbard
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 62398
United Kingdom
10/28/2009 10:37 AM
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Re: For my friend Schoeff
An excellent eulogy...


Sorry for your loss.

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