My friend, Joker  

ByteChaser2 53M
2834 posts
10/19/2005 7:22 am

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm

My friend, Joker

Putting my Who, What, Why thread aside for now. I need to send my friend on his way... Joker.

That's his IRC handle. I'm not sure how he came up with it. Probably from the movie... He and I met a good 10 years ago in a chat room in IRC. It was a group of a hundred or so (mostly) men and women from all over the world. Germany was where he was from. One of the more northern cities.

The guy couldn't speak English all that well but damned if he didn't give it the old college try. We'd talk in the channel and poke friendly rips at his unusual butchering of the language, have great laughs about it and find we'd spent the better part of the night teaching him remedial English.

As years passed, he got so much more fluent, to the point that you had to look close to figure out that English was, in fact, a second language for him. Talk about applying ones self to a task.

I met him once. Of the "clique" of 10 or so of us in this channel, I was the only one fortunate enough to have felt his firm and friendly handshake, and experienced his kindly, gentle, jovial manner and conversation face to face.

I was on business about 4 years ago in Germany. A city just south of Frankfurt. A two week engagement. I'd mentioned to him where I was headed and when a couple of weeks prior. And damned if he didn't search me down at my hotel one evening.

He and his friend 'Mik' drove a few hours south just to meet we, share a few bottles of heffy and talk. Keep in mind now, I'd never actually seen a picture of him and neither had he of me. But as soon as I'd walked through the hotel lobby, he recognized me. I had no idea who these two were and frankly had visions of me, kidnapped and held hostage. Until he introduced himself...

He was a tallish, rather um... portly gentleman. In complete contrast with Mik and I both. A gentle giant and had he white hair and a beard, I swear he'd have been jolly old Saint Nick, sans red suit and fur lined hat.

He brought pictures of his (absolutely stunning) wife and children, photos of his brothers and sisters, even his (obviously well fed) cat. For a few hours, he'd pick a photo and describe who or what it was.

I hadn't brought anything near as personally descriptive but he seemed enthralled by my descriptions of my family, home and life in America. Mik just kind of sat there and grinned the whole time

In the last few months, I've been absent from the channel. Job, and life (and an addiction to blogging) having predicated my failure to check back in with the posse.

Just yesterday, I got a call from another of our little clique. Joker died on the 17th. His heart stopped beating sometime in the late afternoon.

So I've built him his own little heaven complete with a stack of porno CD's, an IRC channel full of people speaking "Tex-lish" and "Tennessee-an". A bottomless cigar box and a photo album of his posse.

Welcome home Joker....

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