Monday, February 06, 2006

Blue Monday

A short time ago, November 6, 2005 to be precise, I wrote about reuniting with my old friends:
After having been estranged from my very best friends for nearly fifteen years (roughly the duration of my ill-fated marriage)—the ones with whom I suffered ridicule for daring to experiment with ‘Punk Rock’ and *gasp* individualism and nonconformity—I recently got the opportunity to become reacquainted with many of them. Back then (and perhaps now as well), I saw myself as the least bright of those in our clique, so I was naturally curious to know how they’ve matured and/or changed, and whether or not we still have as many things in common, such as: political philosophy, world-view, interests, etc.

As it happens, I was able to spend several hours with them just yesterday, which was a lot of fun. Following the initial catch-up and the introduction of the children, the conversation turned to politics, and to a lesser extent, religion. It was as though (from my perspective anyway) the intervening decade and a half of separation simply disintegrated, as we often debated the very same topics as teenagers.

The conversation moved from exorbitant gasoline prices, to oil producers, to government regulation (among other things). In addition to my ‘libertarian’ perspective, one of the participants in the discussion was a disaffected Republican, whereas another was a self-described liberal. Contra my position, the others seemed to be content with more regulation, rather than less, with respect to the economy in general, and the ‘petroleum markets’ in particular. To the extent that I’m less than satisfied with the points I made, I’ll mention a couple of good arguments on the subject.
What I failed to mention in that post is that two of the brightest members of the original group have since died: James Zajicek passed at age 20 (a few days after his birthday) and Dr. Chris Whitehead passed away at age 29 (after receiving his PhD in chemistry and a professorship at Florida State University).

I learned of the latter in October ’05, some two years after the fact. Now, tragedy has struck once again. On Saturday night, February 4 2006, we lost another friend: Jon Rigsby a.k.a. Dr. Bastian J. Meyerson (satirical bio). Incidentally, he was in my 2nd grade class and is the “self-described liberal” mentioned above. He was only 31 years old...he’ll be missed. May he rest in peace…1974-2006.