April 30, 2016

Gentle and Jaded

I recently heard from Amir's friend Amanda, who met him when he was in his late 20s:
Amir would leave me funny, pithy notes at work, made me amazing CDs of his favorite songs that I thought I should know and love. He gave me an amazing love letter in his neat and distinctive handwriting, at turns funny and heartfelt, with references to Madonna, Heart and Cheap Trick songs.
In 2013, we met up for dinner at a Vietnamese restaurant Amir chose. He looked great, healthy, and he seemed happy (in his way). Even though I hadn't seen him in years, the conversation came as easily as if we had never not been close. He listened as I told him about my fucked up life. He had this way of listening and responding that was simultaneously gentle and jaded. He made me feel like he really heard me, he understood, he could relate, he cared.
We walked around the neighborhood and talked about music and his job at the athletic club, about our cats, our families, his girlfriend. We ate gelato and smoked a cigarette. He walked me back to my car, gave me a hug, and we said, "Let's do this again soon." That was the last time I saw Amir.
I miss know that I could always send him a text asking him the name of that one Chicago song, or what he thought about the recent Super Bowl halftime performance, or what did Meatloaf mean when he said he wouldn't do "that," or did he see this awesome article from The Onion? Even when our friendship went dormant for years, I liked knowing that he was out there in the world somewhere.
I hate that this is no longer true, that we are now living in a world with no Amir. It feels unbelievably wrong.
Thanks, Amanda. I wholeheartedly agree.