On May 1, one of my dearest friends, Scott, silently left this world. The best way I know to process grief is to write down my favorite memories of those I’ve lost.
That way I know, I will always remember…
I will always remember the first time I saw you. It was my second trip to Waukesha, and we went to eat at Chiang Mai Thai with a group of people from work. You didn’t introduce yourself or talk to me. We sat at the opposite ends of the table. You tucked your napkin into your collar and focused intently on gobbling up your food.
(Turns out, you didn’t like me, because the word on the street was that I was going to be taking over the management of all your products.)
I will always remember our first conversation. You were sitting in your office behind a wall of monitors. I walked in with the intent to acquire some data from one of your databases. “Your mousepad is a cutting board,” I observed. You grunted. “If I give you a really big cookie, will you help me retrieve some information?” I asked. You grudgingly gave me the information. I gave you a giant cookie that I had been hiding behind my back. And we were friends.
(I didn’t know then that you didn’t really care for sweets (weirdo!), but what mattered was that I followed through on my promise. Not the cookie.)
I will always remember being at the office really late, working with the PR team on the 3.0 release. We were texting and I wrote, “I could really use a hot chocolate right now…” Ten minutes later you showed up—with hot chocolate.
I will always remember the time I missed my flight and was stuck at an airport hotel on a Friday night. You changed your plans, picked me up, and took me out for the most exquisite culinary experience of my life—wearing shorts and a t-shirt.
I will always remember exploring London with you (when our meetings were over) and our bewilderment over the early closing time of the pubs. But we quickly figured out that the night clubs stayed open much later. No dancing required.
(I was thinking this was maybe not such a good idea the following morning as we trudged through the airport feeling like hell. Your solution: a Bloody Mary at the airport breakfast place.)
I will always remember when you talked me into downing my first shot (a Sicilian Kiss) with you and your brother. This event was so significant that you recorded it in your calendar so we could commemorate it every year. And we did.
(You said you were a bad influence. I agreed.)
I remember that we got mad at each other sometimes, but we never stayed mad very long. More importantly, I will always remember that we were so much on the same page that we earned the nickname “Scabita” at our staff meeting.
(We were a good team.)
I will always remember the evening you returned from India and called me on the way from the airport to meet you at Mr. B’s.
(You were in desperate need of a steak. Sleep could wait.)
I will always remember when you left work (and a senior staff meeting) to drive my dog to the kennel and my family to the airport during the worst blizzard of the year. You didn’t slow down even 1 mph even though the visibility was pretty much nonexistent. (It was scary!) But we arrived safely and made all our flights all the way to Sweden.
I will always remember how you dropped everything to take me and my daughter to the hospital when my husband was out of town. You stayed with us during the whole 2-hour visit and actually managed to make a quite serious situation interesting and almost humorous.
(Your friendship helped carry me through the lost year.)
I will always remember worrying about how stressed you were and creating a PowerPoint presentation to persuade you to take an extended vacation. It worked, and I’m so glad you got to experience Europe for more than 24 hours.
(I only scolded you a little when you kept checking in on Skype to make sure everything was OK at the office.)
I will always remember when I went to your office on my last day at Edgenet to say goodbye. You refused. So I taught you the Swedish phrase “vi ses” (we will see each other).
(And we did.)
I will always remember that you remembered my birthday this year. And that I sent you the most perfect StoryPeople print for your birthday—21 days later. And you liked it.
And the best thing about you is that I am only one of many lucky friends and family members who have similar, but different memories of you. Because you gave freely of yourself and lived every day as if it was your last.
I’m angry and sad that you left without saying goodbye. But then again, you weren’t much into goodbyes.
So all I can say is “vi ses” and thanks for the memories.