Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tribute to Mags

Below is my tribute to a dear friend, Maggie. I graduated college with her daughter and shared a few colorful moments with her in my b.c. days.

R.I.P. 02/18/32 - 03/29/10

Maggie was a wonderful woman, devoted mother, dedicated teacher, patriotic American, diehard Michigan fan and a faithful friend. She had a heart of gold and was quick to help someone in need. She volunteered her time freely, whether it was campaigning for the rights of the handicapped or serving the veterans or homeless. She loved her children deeply and cherished her friendships.

She always enjoyed a good laugh, even if it was at her own expense. I had the great fortune of experiencing quite a few laughs with her. One such occasion sticks out in my mind the most.

Mimi and I graduated in the morning and were going to meet early that evening at the Dash Inn for a few celebratory margaritas and some dinner. The Dash was a dumpy, little, student hangout that was more famous for its margaritas than the food. Hence the place was always packed with students and the atmosphere quite boisterous.

Maggie and my mom had gone off shopping that afternoon and arranged to meet us at the Dash. Well, Mimi and I arrived on time, but our moms were nowhere to be found. After a half hour or so, we began to get concerned. Now mind you this was in the day before cell phones, so after using the pay phone to call our respective homes and getting no answer, all we could do was wait.

After about 45 minutes or so we heard Maggie yelling “Whoopee”. We turned to look and saw her and my mom stumbling towards us, followed in tow by some greasy looking dude who looked like he hadn’t showered for several days. Mimi and I looked at each other and started laughing. Our moms were not just a little buzzed; they were highly intoxicated. They pulled up chairs and to our surprise, the greasy looking dude did too.

“So, who’s your friend?” I asked my mom.

“This is Dave. Dave lives in his van,” she laughed.

“That’s nice,” I replied. “How did you meet him?”

“He works at Safeway,” was her answer.

“Where have you guys been all day?” Mimi wanted to know.

Maggie defiantly replied, “We don’t need to tell you. We can have fun too. Whoopee, Whoopee!”

Well, shortly after their arrival, Maggie decided she had to go to the bathroom. The bathroom was only large enough to fit two stalls and one small sink and there was generally a line outside the door waiting to get in. The bathroom was thoroughly disgusting, to say the least. The white linoleum floors were black from dirty footprints and spilled beer, the toilets were stained yellow from cigarette smoke, the bright pink walls were graffitied, and the room smelled like stale cigarettes and beer.

As Maggie was in the bathroom, our conversation at the table turned to Dave as Mimi and I were curious who this guy was and my mom was no help at all because she couldn’t stop laughing. What she was laughing at, I’ll never know. After a while, we became concerned for Maggie since she hadn’t returned from the bathroom and she’d been gone for an abnormally long period of time.

I decided to go check on her. I cut past the people in line, opened the door and yelled “Maggie, are you in there?”

“Whoopee,” I heard.

“Are you alright?”

“Whoopee”, I got again. I chuckled and returned to the table.

Several minutes later Maggie finally reappeared at the table.

“What happened in there?” Mimi asked.

Maggie proudly said, “I had a hard time getting these off the toilet” as she reached into her purse and produced four disgustingly yellow bolt caps from the base of the toilet.

You see, Maggie had just purchased her house at the Lakes and was in the process of renovating her home. Apparently her toilet was missing some bolt caps.

“MOTHER, THAT’S GROSS!” Mimi exclaimed in horror.

“I’ll boil them! I’ll boil them!” Maggie laughed.

The whole table bursted out laughing. We tried to convince Maggie to put them back and even offered to buy her some at the local hardware store.

“I’ll boil them, I’ll boil them. Whoopee!” she joyfully proclaimed.

Needless to say, we had quite a lot of fun laughing and trying to figure out what happened to our moms between graduation time and dinner. We never really did find out.

I’m sorry to say that Maggie did take toilet bolts home with her that evening. I don’t know if she ever ended up using them, and I honestly forgot to look the next time I visited her home.

Maggie was always good for a laugh, whether it was watching her smoke horse sh*t cigarettes in Mexico, tubing down the Salt River or just hanging out, drinking a Budweiser with her.

Thanks for your friendship and the wonderful memories, Mags. You’ll be missed and I’m glad to have known you.

With love,