If you had asked me ten years ago, if I thought that today, I’d be delivering the eulogy of a beloved friend, I would have said no.

I first met him in the younger years of my life.  I was stupid then, selfish.  I didn’t want to learn what he’d eventually teach me.

We didn’t get on at first.  Our partnership began out of necessity.  He was my in.  He gave me the means to put my ideas on paper. 

I needed him; and though he’d never admit it, none of his talents (however good) ever came to anything without me.  He knew how to make things really pop.  But he needed me to help him mobilize.  

I was his motivation.

I got him going in the mornings.  

Some days were good.  Some days we got together and magic happened. 

But sometimes I’d get distracted, and he’d slip away unnoticed.  When I’d finally decide to quit watching Youtube videos, and get back to work, I’d discover him, once again, missing.  

I have spent countless hours in his pursuit.  

But every time is the same:

First, I look in all of his usual spots (in the classroom-devising some new idea, in the library-pouring over his textbooks, or lying comfortably on his bed-with his nose stuck in a book).  Next, realizing just how much time I am wasting, and how I really ought to just find another partner, I skim the less usual ,but somewhat likely, places (at the office going over a brief or lying about in the hallways trying to catch some zzzzz’s between class). Then, I check over those downright improbable locations (playing hide n’ go seek in the fort we made last week or next door getting acquainted with my crush). 

And then, I break down.

 . . . and go back to the really obvious locals and ransack them, tearing through 

Only then, right when I’ve hit my peak, and am quite ready to commit murder, would he turn up, mumbling something about getting lost.  

He spelled out my flaws.  He scribbled over and crossed out ideas and concepts that he didn’t deem worthy of my talent.  He spared no feelings.  To him, everything was black and white.  

And as much of a flake as he could be, and as harsh as he could be, I came to really appreciate him.  I began to realize, like many of you, just how genius he really was.  I came to appreciate those less visible qualities he had, the ones that most people never took the time to notice.  He was so intuitive.  And he always seemed to see right through me: to know exactly what I was thinking.  He was an artist; he could do wonders with any idea I gave him.  He was a scholar and a romantic.  He was an inventor and a comic book artist.  He never wrote an ill word.

Because if you write something you mean it.

And it’s hard to take those things back once you’ve penned them.

And though he’s gone now, he’s changed us all. He’s made more of us than we ever could make of ourselves.

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