(Originally posted on April 16, 2010)
Today’s Dave’s birthday. Thought I’d write about Dave, my oldest friend in the States I’m still very close to. He now lives in a town in Kentucky across the Ohio River from Cincinnati. Ever since he left Philadelphia for Cincinnati about 10 years ago, we had been far away from each other… but now that I’m also in the Midwest, I can get to him in just a bit more than a couple of hours driving! I always try to stop over at his place briefly on the way back from my road trips to the East.
He called me ‘Koji-man’ when we first started to talk — It was in one of those aural theory II or III classes. “Why do you call me that?” I asked, and he went, “cuz you are the man, Koj.” I didn’t have many friends back then, and I simply appreciated his effort to talk to me when I was the quiet and odd one in the class.
We graduated together from college. We both started working in Center City Philadelphia. We often had lunch together; he used to call me at work to specify a street corner, and we met up there — I think our most frequent rendezvous spot was 17th and Walnut. He was often referred to at my work as the McDonald’s guy. I still wear the fly-fishing vest that he bought for me around that time.
We both love technology and gadgets, so I guess we mostly talked about them when we got together. I wasn’t into football at all back then; I got a bit irritated when he started watching football on my television while we were hanging. I don’t remember if we talked a lot about music, but we did a few concerts together. He was in my very first Bach ensemble. I also remember going to see him sing at the Academy of Music and at St. Mark’s church.
I was extremely saddened when he left Philadelphia, but luckily we kept in touch. He was the one who sent me the iSight camera in 2003 when I was in Tokyo to study Bach; he was the first person I did Internet conferencing with. It was exciting for me to be able to show him my tiny room and the view (or non-view) outside my window in Japan. He understood that I missed my Philadelphia Eagles; during the 2004 season (Super Bowl season) he kept sending me in Tokyo the DVDs of the Eagles games each and every week (except for the bye week, of course)… and I still treasure those discs.
I’m not always nice to him as I tend to be a smart-ass when we talk, but he understands that I love him, I’m always open to him, and for me there’s nothing I’d hide from him. I just wish I can do more for him… Perhaps later I’ll get the chance when my life gets more stable. Anyway, happy birthday buddy, and thanks for everything as always. You’re the reason I do this blog, Dave.