Tuesday, April 29, 2008

49 Little Ways

Today is my friend’s 49th birthday. I think he’s pretty spectacular and wanted to make sure he knew it. I really suck at presents. I can never seem to find something that’s “just right”. Or “just right AND something I can afford”. …

In a post somewhere else – I said I wanted to do 49 nice things for him. Really, it turned out to be 10 little gifts (listed first), and 39 things I wanted him to know that I’ve noticed/admired about him.

The gifts:

  1. Sent before his b’day: “With Hidden Noise: Photographs by John Menapace”!!!

  2. An early morning e-wish

  3. A post somewhere else for all his on-line friends to wish him a spectacular day

  4. A birthday phone call (which is only a big deal because of how much I hate to talk on the phone)

  5. Four iTune songs (when I can figure out how to make them GIFTS and not MUSIC FOR ME) *sigh*

  6. Oh What a Beautiful Morning” from Ray Charles Sings, Basie Swings

  7. Just my Imagination” Dianne Reeves

  8. Autumn Leaves” Miles Davis & Cannonball Adderley

  9. The Look of Love” by Diana Krall (thank you CWEsq for pointing this video out to me)

  10. This post

The following 39 thing are list of what and why I admire you:

  1. Your strength - to take control of your life and reshape it for the healthiest of outcomes

  2. Your dedication to your children

  3. Rearranging your professional life when you became a single parent, so you were available for your children

  4. Putting your anger and fear aside last summer when your oldest son needed you

  5. Your obvious love and enjoyment of your parents; which led to …

  6. Giving up your nice aisle seat on the way home from the UK so an elderly gentleman could sit next to his wife.

  7. The compassion and sensitivity you showed when you shared/wrote that story (I’d post it here for everyone to see, but I think you’d kill me)

  8. Your tenaciousness to stick with photography and learn all you can, even when you get rejection letters

  9. Welcoming your daughter home after she graduated from college – and helping her take the next step, while standing firm with how you will and won’t help

  10. Your beautiful designs

  11. You’re pride in your oldest son’s accomplishments and facing his responsibilities

  12. Supporting other artists (Zoe Strauss) with your time and energy

  13. How proud you are of your youngest son who’s making his own way, difficult for a #3

  14. The way you appreciate your clients

  15. Your patience with me (especially when I showed my ugly side)

  16. Your ethics when it comes to environmentalism in your everyday life

  17. Your willingness (bravery) to tell me the truth when I ask for your opinion

  18. Your eye for color in your photos and your over all aesthetic principles

  19. The joy you capture in your human portraits (especially photos of children)

  20. The way you use parallel lines in you pictures – and that you explained this to me!

  21. Discussing art with me and sharing your viewpoint

  22. The way you interact with young children when you capture those spur-of-the-moment-un-posed pictures

  23. Your love of good food

  24. The way you encourage me with my writing and taking classes

  25. Your enthusiasm for going to new places

  26. Your willingness to try new things

  27. How you share your gained creative and technical knowledge with others (re: Dilly and McB)

  28. How you’ve figured out what’s important in life, and what isn’t, and pursued the important things

  29. How great you were with our friends young children when we were in the UK

  30. Your generous spirit

  31. Your (almost) life-long friendship with Randy

  32. The way your zest for life and attention to details show up in your art and your actions

  33. The honest way you portray the effect of stark living conditions in your photographs

  34. Your desire to be a chronicler with your photographs

  35. The sensitive way you shoot troubling photos (the roadside memorials)

  36. The enjoyment you took in explaining “Cheese wit” in Amsterdam!

  37. Your bravery for standing in line to get bus and train tickets in foreign cities

  38. Matching your design philosophy to your spiritual philosophy which I think is the strength of your designs

  39. Always wanting to know “the story” of the things and the people you photograph

There are many more things I could write about - in fact, I guess it would be just quicker to list what ISN'T wonderful about you.

  • ....

Yep. Can't think of one thing.

So once again, Happy Birthday, CHP.




Christopher Paquette said...

totally speechless, but amazed and appreciative, and I will comment further tomorrow.... (wow).

Bob said...

what a wonderful tribute to a friend.

Anonymous said...

See...I knew it...Superman DOES exist! Happy Birthday CHP!! Make it a great one! :o)

Christopher Paquette said...

It is a wonderful tribute, beautifully and eloquently written (of course!).

I'm still stunned by it.....