In Memory

In memory of our beloved boy Virgil May 5, 2002 – September 10, 2019

Virgil on his 17th Birthday Celebration 2019

Our little old man has passed on. He has now joined his sister Mitzi in a spiritual realm.

Virgil joined us in October of 2002 as a first birthday present of sorts for his older half sister Mitzi. He was from a second litter her mother had from a different father 8 months after her birth. He was an awkward looking puppy that actually seemed as if he  might have a slight birth defect. Possibly from an unhealthy mother did who had her litters to close together. The owner of the mother had him left as no one would take him and was about to take him to the humane society. I gave the guy money to have the mother fixed and I brought Virgil home to foster until I could find him a home.

Needless to say he was a hit with Mitzi from moment one.

Virgil and Mitzi circa October 2002

Our Dalmatian, Mattie, was having issues with a rambunctious 5 month old playing with a wild one year old and got snappy with him. I had a favorite line from Greater Tuna that popped out of my mouth when scolding Mattie for scolding the puppies. I sternly warned her and said “Mattie! Quit it now! …. Mattie, I’m gonna knock you into next week!” That line was used by the character Vera Carp in the funeral home scene toward her son Virgil so the original line was “Virgil! quit it now! …”

I don’t know how to cut it out of here but if you just want to see that line, start at 26:00 and run through 28:10. (This is actually the HBO production of the entire play, if you have time it’s fantastic.)

At that moment not only did Virgil now have a name, but he also had a home. That scared little dog that I took from the back seat of the marina dockworker’s car to foster had a forever home where he continued to live a long, happy and very healthy life for the next 16 years and 11 months. His home was right here with us.

Over his years here our family has lost, and our family has grown.

From left to right in front the back are: Betty, Mitzi (deceased June 2019), Abner, Virgil, Phoebe, Patsy and then Gilda (way in the back).

Others that Virgil shared our home with that passed on before him were our beloved Liver spotted Dalmatian Mattie, our sweet Chocolate Lab Diva and the rescue of our senior Border Collie Nina that was featured here on Fearsome Beard in 2014. Right now instead of here in our bed, he is there with his familiar housemates and sister that he hasn’t been with in a while.

Virgil and Mitzi in their golden years.

Virgil was a happy and healthy boy until the very end. Yesterday he was out on our patio sunning with Betty. He was mobile and out their on his own accord. It wasn’t until last night just before bedtime that he showed signs something may be amiss. He lost his balance and couldn’t stand. He was just off balance, we’ve seen that in other older dogs before and seen it pass quickly so we did not worry. We carried him to bed and he actually had a good night. However this morning he worsened and his deterioration was fast and he did not suffer. He died very unexpectedly in my arms.

He had a great life here with us as we had with him.

Virgil after a grooming cuddling with his youngest housemates Betty & Phoebe

Virgil we will forever love you. We will forever be grateful that you were part of our lives. You will live on in us as we share the love you placed into our hearts with all the others we touch.

Virgil, this is not goodbye as we will see you on the other side. Until then continue to share your love with your canine family that has been awaiting your arrival. Your kisses enrich us. Your snuggles comfort us. Your love fills us.

Virgil, I love you, we all love you.

Until then, Godspeed.

Virgil May 5, 2002 – September 10, 2019

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Mitzi

My Angel, you kissed me one last time an hour ago. You were my angel from the day I met you and brought you home. You were only 8 weeks and weighed about a half of a pound. You are my Angel today although you’ve left your earthy bounds for a heaven I do not yet know, you are still with me. I promised you the day I first held you that I’d always take care of you, love you and be here for you, I still am. We may be apart, yet we will always be together. That’s what love is. Love sets us free. Together or apart we care, we love.

Godspeed my dear little girl. Give Nikki, Tess, Mattie, Diva and Nina a kiss for me. I’ll sure miss you here with me but I know I will hold you and kiss you again when I get to the other side. Until then may you find as many Itty Bitty Balls to chase and fetch as you desire.

Mitzi 2001

Mitzi 2019

Mitzi October 15, 2001 – June 2, 2019

I love you.

In memory

To the families and friends who lost their loved ones in the Parkland shooting, we stand with you on this day.

To the survivors of the Parlkland shooting, you inspire us with you leadership.

To all the youth in high schools throughout this country, take a stand for your future to live in a country that respects life, responsibility and safety over stupidity. The future belongs to you.

Honor

In 1988 I was young. In 1988 I was still very influenced by my upbringing. In 1988 I was  financially successful. In 1988 I was selfish. In 1988 I voted with my wallet, I remember making that decision on purpose …to vote for a conservative financial policy, that at that time I believed benefitted me, over social policy. In 1988 I voted for George H.W. Bush for president.

My politics changed during the George H.W. Bush presidency. I matured. I moved away from my conservative roots. I realized that I resonated with liberal social policy and with liberal financial policy over those policies of the conservatives. In 1992 I voted for Bill Clinton.

Looking back, I disagreed with much of the politics of George H.W. Bush. I lived through the AIDS crisis and lost more friends and lovers than I wish to count. I hated his war. I grew to completely disagree with trickle down economics, tax cuts and reductions in societal safety nets.

In fact I came to resent the politics of the entire Bush family.

Yesterday I flew through Houston on my way home to San Diego from Ft. Lauderdale. I had a tight connection and had to practically run to make it to my next gate. As I made my way as fast as I could my stride was stopped in its tracks as I passed this at the George H.W. Bush International Airport:

George H.W. Bush Statue

I’ve passed that statue many times. I’ve even stopped to read the honorarium in times past when I needed to pass some time at this airport. The wall is filled with the history and the achievements of service that he gave to his country. From his service in World War II through his service after his presidency. George H.W. Bush was devoted to his country and to democracy.

Yesterday in my rush I not only stopped in my tracks, I paused. I paused to respect a man for his service. I paused to respect a man for his honor. I paused to realize that he valued political discorse. I paused to acknowledge that although we differed, he also believed in human rights, freedom, immigration, respect, service, compromise, representation and his country. I paused to respect that he valued a greater good for community, he valued society and he valued the world.

We had differences, but we had commonality. I began to cry.

I got to my next flight as Fearsome absorbed my silent tears. I wept for my country. I wept in hope that the future of our politics will one day soon again allow discussion, understanding, compromise, progress, respect and honor.

Godspeed.

Stan Lee, Superhero

Stan Lee 1922-2018, Marvel Comics

Super Heroes often save us from evil. There is no evil greater than bigotry and racism.

Stan created some of the greatest Super Heroes we know. His words from 1969 live on as an inspiration.

-Stan Lee, you will always be a Superhero-

An Inspiration

Verklempt I am.

Inspired  I am.

Courage. Vulnerability. Truth. Grief. Honor.

Leadership. Patriotism. Integrity.

Honesty. Reality. Respect.

Understanding. Cooperation. Humility. Equality. Democracy. Justice. Service.

There is a greater good. Let’s strive toward that.

We reflect with gratitude for the example given to us by Senator McCain as well as that shared by the speakers above.

Godspeed.

“We call BS”

If you haven’t seen this, Fearsome reccomends you stop, sit, watch, listen and feel. It is well worth the 10 minutes.

If this resonates with you and your values, please follow her lead and “Call BS”.

This young girl is courageous and an inspiration that I hope many follow, including myself. May she inspire you.

Humanity needs more just like her. I believe there are more, many more.

I take this moment to encourage more to speak up, speak out and to take action.

Grown men cry

We cry when we feel.

We cry because we are vulnerable.

We cry to heal.

We cry with gratitude, or sadness, or joy, or hope, or grief, or pain.

We cry to love.

Today has been a spectacular day around us. My feelings have flowed freely. From joy and gratitude to grief and sadness. I’ve experienced beauty and inspiration as well as bewilderment and confusion.

New art in the alley today beside my barber.

Inspirational sign on the sidewalk I passed this afternoon.

Crystal blue sky above me as I walked.

Our last selfie together just now.

I write as we wait. Nina has had a good day but her health has continued to slide. It’s time.

Grown men cry.

Thank you Edith

Edith Windsor 6/20/1929-9/12/2017

Edith is a hero of mine. Edith will be missed but never forgotten. It was her Supreme Court Case that struck down the Defense of Marriage act in 2013 thus causing the federal government to recognize my legal marriage in California from 2008.

I read that a quote of hers was “Don’t Postpone Joy”. I haven’t been able to personally verify this quote as hers, but I think it fitting.

Thank you Edith for helping humanity get just a little better one step at a time.