Renaissance Man

(I originally wrote this post last summer while guest blogging for the subject of the post. In honor of his birthday, I repost it here. Happy birthday, Michael – you’re one in a million. Annie)

He’s a writer. He plays a mean piano – by ear no less – hard on the head but easy on the hands from what I hear. He’s a dad. He’s a husband. And to me, a friend. What you would call a real friend.

It’s funny, though we’ve never met face to face and honestly I’m not sure what it would be like if we did, we have fostered a friendship over the last 4-5 years that is rare. We go beyond friendship, almost all the way to family.

He’s shared with me about the tragic illnesses of both of his parents. I’ve told him about my brother who died of AIDS. I know all about his beautiful daughters and how special each of them are to him. About how his wife is one in a million. About his cute little cats. And his big silver truck. He knows about my love-hate relationship with cigarettes. My sloppy, anal room-mate. My hilarious dog.

We met at an online writer’s group, of all places. It was one of those places that wanna-be writers flock to and need-to-write-to-live writers approach with caution. What the heck, it was free and you also got to meet other writers. What’s not to love?

We swapped crits (critiques) on each other’s assignments. Culminating into a ‘story’ at the end of the course. His was the “Goodbye House” mine was “Faith.” From the beginning I admired the work and the man. Always taking the time to really say something, really give you his honest opinion. You could tell this guy had a lot of heart.

Well, our stint at the online group didn’t last long. We both realized in our own ways that truly we were engaging in Writer’s Socialism. Struggling to help the writers who couldn’t and barely having time for the writers who could. We both like to think we were among the latter.

But our friendship didn’t end there. After there were emails. More story swapping. Talking about anything and everything. Yakking on the phone about this and that. Really, somehow this guy became the brother I lost so many years ago. Somebody who I could talk to about anything and everything. Somebody who really cared about what I had to say.

I was amazed by his life and how he took everything in stride. Juggling parents that needed constant supervision, a family, a marriage, a job, doing music gigs on the side and somehow still finding the time to write. For cripes sake he wrote on the train into work.

Not long ago, we got into this wild marathon email where we starting discussing deeply writing – the ins and outs – where to publish – how to publish, the whole ball of wax. And it got positively addictive. It got to the point where we were each jonesing for the next response. We even had discussions about posting it on his blog. But realized that only a lunatic or a psychic would be able to follow it. It’s done us both good. And I hope it continues to do us both good. Keep us inspired and motivated.

Recently, he went on vacation and asked me to babysit his blog. Frankly, I was a little scared. I’d read his blog and hell I’ve read his writing. A little intimidating to say the least. I was sure his ‘readers’ wouldn’t like my style. That it would be a shock to the system to go from warm, gentle Renassaince Man to whacky, who the hell knows what’s firing those synapses Writer Chick. But…I like a challenge and try to force myself to do things that scare me.

So, I’ve struggled along this last week. Trying hard to entertain the troops in his absence. I hope I have done him justice. Cuz he’s a helluva guy and a true Renassaince Man is a modern world gone (almost ) mad.

Writer Chick

7 thoughts on “Renaissance Man

  1. It amazes me that we’ve yet to meet face to face.
    We go very deep, kiddo.
    I thank you dearly for enriching my creative life.
    You have given me more than you will ever know.

    Someday will have that Guiness, eh?


  2. It truly is wonderful to find those connections in the world. Congrats to both of you for your endearing care and friendship to each other.

    Happy Birthday Michael!


    It’s the best, Jennifer. And most definitely Happy Birthday Mikey! 😉


  3. It’s funny how we can meet our best friends in the oddest of places. You never know where you’re going to find a kindred spirit.

    I enjoy having online/penpal friends, because unlike people in “real life” who you might not run into for awhile, you can have access to their listening ear whenever you feel like typing.

    I love your writing style, WC. Wacky is a good thing. 😀

    Oh, and a very happy birthday, Michael!


    You’re so right, Kelsey – it is amazing how we manage to seek out kindred spirits. The internet can sometimes be amazing in that regard. God bless it.


  4. it’s nice that you have developed such a bond. i have too with some of my blogging friends. i dont know what i’d do without them! it’s nice he asked you to watch over his blog, that’s quite an honor and a somewhat new concept to me but i love your writing and i’m sure you’ll do him proud!
    love ya!

    Hey Reggie – sorry hon, I guess I didn’t make this clear…I did this post months ago before I was a blogger. Michael asked me to pinch-hit during his vacation for a week last summer. During that week, I did this post. I reposted it because…well I feel the same way – more so probably and I wanted to honor him for his birthday.

    And you’re right – blogging buds are the best.

    love ya back!


  5. Hi WC, have watched your posting for a while since seeing you on Reg’s site. You write beautifully. What a lovely heart warming story this is. Thanks for telling it. Having such a deep friendship like this is a gift. Its what makes life worth living. 🙂 Bird

    Hi Bird! Nice to see you here. Aw thanks – I like your writing too. You’re right – friendships like this are gifts and we should all treasure them.


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