Then on the way to dinner, I got the news that Teddy had passed away, and it quickly changed the tenor of the evening. He hasn't been healthy in several years, between diabetes and kidney failure and assorted other issues. When he joined us for camping the last couple of years, he had to pop out for a few hours for dialysis at a local hospital. (Nice that he could make such arrangements when not at home.) But his attitude was always the same: big and loud and brash and funny.
"Where the white women at?!" was Teddy's battle cry, and as much as he played with the idea of being a big, scary, black guy, he was really just a huge teddy bear. One suburban New Jersey friend talks about how he showed up at her house for a party and loudly shouted to the neighbors that there was a black guy around, but it's OK, he was invited.
Teddy was into tequila and Corona, so when I got to Felicia's to meet up with Mickie and Jake, that's what I started with. (Corona tastes better after numbing your mouth with tequila, I suppose.) I then moved on to the Guinness that better fit my tastes, and bought Jake one, as well. (The silly sod was holding an empty glass!)
I assume there will be a real wake or funeral, and I'll try to get there. Meantime, I've had my own wake for Teddy.