One of my best buds Drew E. Cohen, turned 40 in October and over twenty of us from all corners of the country descended upon Indio, California to help the man celebrate.
We swam, dined, karaoked, Halloweened, baby showered, competed in Beer Olympics, and raised our glasses to a guy who’s been asked to be a best man more times than anyone I’ve ever met.
Everyone came together and contributed in their own way to make it not just a memorable weekend the man of the hour, but for us all. Truly, one for the books.
I was glad to have contributed some of my finest artist works to date for the celebration, in the form of a book cover, a cake design of biblical proportions, and Beer Olympics team bandanas. A true career high for me.
Lastly, Kelsie wrangled everyone to contribute a fun memory or well wish for a book she put together for him. Figure I’d share my contribution here, becasue I meant every word, and the truth is worth preserving:
Forty… My god, I’m so, so sorry bud. We go back a long ways now, since 2009 I think. That said, it shouldn’t be too hard for me to pick one of our memories to share here, certainly a lot to choose from. But If I’m being honest, with so many favorites, it’s not easy picking just one.
Should it be the first memory I have of you? The time you became if only for a moment, my one true lord and savior, when you literally freed me from a locked parking garage I’d been trapped in for hours on end in the dead of night. You always knew how to make a first impression.
How about the countless shows we’ve been to, where on more than a few occasions people had to tell us to shut the hell up, because no matter how desperately we wanted to see a band, it seemed to sometimes pale in comparison to how much more fun it was to just shoot the breeze and catch up. And on the topic of shows, I have to mention the time that like a modern day Moses you parted a sea of moshing kids at the Troubadour to pick up my fallen glasses for me.
Maybe it’s traveling our country together, 18 states by my count. In nearly all instances, promising ourselves we’d turn in at the hotel at a decent hour for some rest so we wouldn’t spoil our trip, but sure as the Sun shines, we’d always break that promise. Whether the lethal blow was staying out till some ungodly hour, or was actually making it back to the room as intended, but fatally talking hours on end like two kids on a weekend sleepover. Sometimes a combination of both.
We’ve done our fair share of globe trotting outside our borders too. The first time I ever used my passport was of course, with you in Peru. Something I consider to be one of the greatest experiences of my life, and in hindsight, an adventure we were either too young or too hungover to realize just how dangerous it was at times. Then there was “No Rules” in Spain. Watching snow fall while we floated in warm waters in Japan. Cramming into a flat bed truck in Thailand so the locals could pelt us with water balloons for the New Year. Chasing whale sharks and mantas in the Maldives, and exploring a tiny deserted island in the middle of the Indian Ocean. Aimlessly wandering the streets of Hong Kong, and after several hours of day drinking, declaring through an inebriated lens of optimism that we both “could totally see living here.”
Maybe it’s one of the smaller or more ridiculous memories. Watching you simultaneously hail three taxis out of thin air, when the rest of us couldn’t catch one for hours. The copy of Atlas Shrugged that mysteriously arrived on my doorstep. Crushing homemade beer towers in your front lawn like degenerates. You bringing a couch to my “Bring Your Own Chair” party in my empty apartment, and months later, you single handedly carrying that couch out of my apartment after I told you I couldn’t move it by myself. Thinking a shortcut on foot through Skid Row in broad daylight wouldn’t be that scary. Me having the best view in all of Coachella, sitting on your shoulders over 10 feet off the ground. Slayer almost ending my life. Our countless “Piano Man” karaoke duets (If Hell is real, it’s us rewatching those performances for eternity). And of course I can’t forget you helping orchestrate what seemed like all of Dodger Stadium to chant “Let’s go Kyle LET’S GO!”
Maybe my favorite memory of ours is one of the more predictable standouts. Standing up with you on your wedding day and having you stand up with me at mine. Or maybe it’s meeting Della and holding her for the first time.
I think you see the conundrum now. Can’t pick just one. There’s too many memories. I will say after all these years though, what I’m most thankful to you for, is just how far you’re willing to lean in, especially when my nature is to lean out and go it alone. You could’ve stopped inviting me out well before trying for the second, third, fourth, or fifth time that I dodged you. But unlike July 11th at Buca Di Beppo, you didn’t quit, and I’m a lot better off for it.
Yes you’re getting older, but just remember, we may be dying, but we’re not dead yet. Happy 40 my friend.
1981 posts across
years. It's a lot of content, so I put together some of my favorites all in one place. If you’re new here, it’s a great place to start.
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