When I say he was tall I mean that he was 5’10 and I was 6’1 and nobody knew I was taller. He was barrel-chested—not fat but not in good shape but confusingly strong. In a moment of frustration he could slam his fist down on the table so hard you wondered why it didn’t go crashing through the floor into the basement.
He was not handsome. He had a thick auburn beard which he sometimes trimmed to just a moustache—one that would have looked ridiculous on somebody else, but somehow made him more of an icon and less of a mortal. When he lost his moustache to chemo was when I knew he was going to die. The gravity of the situation before that point was lost on me. The missing moustache got me to pull my head out of the sand.
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