Jason TNT

Jason TNT

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

"Happy Birthday Jason" by guest blogger, Mark Cooper

A guest post from friend, Mark Cooper...

So every May 27th at 11:59:59 PM, it was possible for Jason to wish me a happy birthday and for me to wish him the same just one second later.  We were born within a day of each other and thus often celebrated our birthdays together.  Some of you may recall we had monthly Beer Oriented Strategic Sessions (BOSS) nights.  A particularly memorable (or maybe not so memorable) one was on our 40th.  It started at Red Light Red Light (the original location, because we were hip) and for some reason I don’t recall where it ended.  So this year, on Tuesday the 27th, I plan to grab a stool at Red Light Red Light and at the stroke of midnight I’ll raise a glass to my birthday buddy on our 44th.  If he was still around we could catch up on some good BOSS night topics and it might go something like this: 

First, let’s get the bad news out of the way.  Your Gators didn’t do so hot in football this year; we can call it a rebuilding year.  I won’t dwell on who won the national championship.  The good news is that your Red Sox won the World Series.  Miami won the NBA finals and the Seahawks (yes) beat Denver in the Superbowl.  Florida also made it to the NCAA Final Four this year but lost to the eventual champs UConn.

The other good news is that neither Shannon nor Jenn have started dating.  I was able to keep the suitors at bay (for now), although Jenn did dance with a handsome young gentleman in cotillion class.  I tried my best to help Aaron tie his tie for cotillion, but who wears ties anymore.

You’ll be happy to know (I think) that Bell’s Two Hearted Ale is getting more popular; some places even have it on draft.  I have been lax in continuing to research great beer spots in town, I’ll try harder this year.  You’ll also be happy to know that Vampire Weekend had the top Album of the year on Pitchfork, outplacing Kanye West, Daft Punk and critics’ darling Arcade Fire.

This village of fathers did our best to fill in where we could.  Some of us drove the kids to school, some of us took them camping, some of us coached Aaron, some of us coached Shannon.  Along the way we tried to treat them the same as all the other kids, but out of the corner of our eyes we watched to see if sadness was creeping in.  They’ve both been troopers and they’ve both had good years.
We honored your memory with your family and friends at a blowout St. Paddy’s Day party and raised some funds along the way.  Our work carried on, we mowed our lawns, we went to church, we tried out new restaurants, we blew out candles and sang new songs in the car on the way to school.  In some ways losing you made us appreciate it all more, but we missed you along the way.  Sometimes it was a grey feeling in the background, but sometimes it was sharper, because we forgot that you were only with us in spirit, and we thought of something we wanted to tell you.

So tonight, I raise a glass to you...