I ONCE WROTE A LOVE LETTER TO A MAN……
I know how strange the caption above sounds: I super smooth, strappin hoss, Casanova like myself writing a love letter to another man? Sorry ladies, but it’s true……..
I am a terrible person, but every now and then, the Holy Spirit can even get through to a loathsome scoundrel such as myself. I usually while away my days thinking impure thoughts about nekid women and don’t hear the Holy Spirit when he knocks at my door. But one day, I’m guessing 12 years ago, I let him in, and I was just overcome with profound appreciation for all of the blessings (undeserved, of course) that I had been given. I have some neat “things,” like a set of Elvis lamps, an autographed photo of Johnny Unitas and a 7 foot, cardboard cut out of Barry White. I know people envy me for these material possessions, but this feeling of blessed appreciation had nothing to do with my Elvis lamps or other “stuff.” It had to do with relationships. Upon my epiphany, the first thing I did was write a love letter to Alec Hamilton.
I forget all that I said. I told Big Al how much I appreciated his friendship, and I closed the letter by telling Al that “I loved him.” I think that statement says a lot. If a selfish, unrepentant, reprobate like me has an overwhelming and indeed, divine desire to write a love letter to another man, that man must be a pretty special dude. He was.
I went to work for Alec straight out of law school at Virginia Landmark Corporation. We developed and sold real estate. I am sure I worked long hours and had plenty of stress, but I don’t remember any of that, all I remember is laughing. Laughing, laughing and laughing. Al was 25 years plus my senior and also a member of my fraternity at Virginia, St. Anthony Hall. Most men get into the real world and they mature, I didn’t because everyday working with Al was like sitting in the Elk Room at the Hall after deciding to blow off classes for the day. I guess I could be proud of some of the business successes we had, but what I am really proud of is all the childish pranks we played on one another. Al was always at the center of the mischief.
When a new client came to town, Al would always take me out to dinner with the new prospect. During these dinners, I don’t ever remember talking about internal rates of return, market demographics or accelerated depreciation. I remember Al just being “the Master” and laughing, and laughing and laughing. Alec was just such a good guy, people wanted to do business with him. He never had to try “and sell” anything, he was just Al.
Today, in church, I felt Al’s loss. Al usually sat in the back, center aisle, and I sit up front on the same aisle. We would always laugh, chuckle and make faces at one another during the service. If we were 3rd graders, the teacher would have sent us to the principal. When I walked by Al’s pew this morning, it hit me that he is gone. I will never walk by that pew again and not think about him, and soon, I am sure I will start laughing.
Rob Is Right has a HUGE viewership up in heaven. I just want to warn you boys up there, y’all better get your hip boots out because the “BS” is about to start flowing….as a matter of fact, you might want to get up on the high ground too!