Monday, April 4, 2005


How is it that your name still comes up?

Eight years after that ill-fated trip to Argentina: a week of debauchery - drinking, philandering, and fighting - capped off by a rather interesting, if not mind-blowingly long, episode with customs on the return trip. Did you know what you were trying to bring back to Canada? Was it our youth that so easily convinced those agents of our ignorance?

Seven years after that race down Bloor Street - the race which saw us both almost dead, and our cars, right-offs. We tried to lie - to say that we weren't speeding and didn't even know each other - but the cops didn't have to investigate to know that it wasn't true. The way we sat there on the curb together, bleeding and laughing, was all they needed.

Four years after that mushroom- and whiskey-fuelled hike through the British Columbian Rockies. Who knew hiking at night was such a bad idea? We blamed the moon for getting us lost, then. The murky shadows became trees, and the murkier trees all ran together, and each new direction we turned looked exactly the same as the place we just left. It's amazing how we managed to stumble back to the cabin under the crushing light of dawn, just as the drugs were wearing off.

Two years after you shot yourself to death in a downtown hotel with your father's gun. I would've pegged you as the type to leave a note - something really sarcastic and filled with ironic angst. Guess I was wrong.

In 1994 Jacques Derrida was quoted in the New York Times as saying:
But psychoanalysis has taught that the dead — a dead parent, for example — can be more alive for us, more powerful, more scary, than the living. It is the question of ghosts.

And this, a question of your ghost: how is it that your name still comes up? And so often? With each recounting of the stories, your role becomes bigger, and with each uttering of your name, you become more real. Maybe even more real in death than you were in life. How many more words must be spoken before you're actually brought back from the grave? And will you have with you secrets in tow? Secrets better left buried in the earth? You, a small and harmless man in life, leave a large and terrifying spectre in death.

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