Thursday, April 25, 2013

Swapping Woodpeckers for Phone Calls

Out in the country surrounded by birds and the strident hammering of a resident woodpecker. Over the past few days I’ve heard more woodpecker pecks than all those of previous years. At first I thought the sound might grow tiresome with a bird so insistent, but it is just the opposite and when Woody flies away I almost miss the sound.

Magnolias are in bloom.

Woodpeckers make a pleasant background, but in fact my thoughts are a thousand miles away. Three or four days ago I got by email an invitation to link with a magazine I sometimes send stories to. Not completely sure what I was joining, I clicked ‘okay’ and soon found myself a member of the professional networking site, LinkedIn. Didn't think much about it until the following day when I got email via LinkedIn from a friend of thirty-one years ago.

I met JB in Los Angeles in 1975 and for the next seven years we spent a lot of fun time together, most of it crazier than mules drunk on vodka martinis. From the first day we met it was obvious we were brothers in humor, and becoming fast friends was a given. Memory reminds me those were heady days, JB and I at the front of the line more often than not yelling for more. At the time JB was living in a big, old house in Hollywood that had once belonged to cowboy star Tom Mix. Not more than a few months in town I moved into the house, joining three others.

JB and I remained good friends over the next seven years. He was having some success with his music and soon enough I found myself taken up with classes at UCLA. Then one day I went to Japan and JB went to New York. Many times over the passing years I thought about my friend, wondering how he fared. Many years passed and eventually the memories got locked away. Around 2006 another California friend emailed asking if I knew someone named JB, that he was asking about me. A mix up of some sort short-circuited the connection and we never did hook up. Until today.

Busy with moving house, I didn’t have a chance to call the number on JB’s email until this afternoon. After a minute of verifying names, JB said, “I have been looking for you for thirty years.” It’s a warm feeling knowing that you have a friend who never gave up trying to re-connect across so many years.

JB lives now in San Francisco, married for the past seventeen years and the owner of a theatrical production company. The timing was bad on our call, not enough time enough to say much, but we made a good start. Looking forward now to re-kindling a long dormant friendship.


  1. What a touching story of re-connecting with you friend. A good day for you.

  2. As I've often said about Facebook, like it or not with its constant changing of format by the geeks who own and operate it, it does connect family and friends long lost and allows a few lines of chat as often as you like. A benefit for me is connecting with many writers I admire, reading their posts on writing and the like, and occassionally chatting directly with them.


About Me

My photo
Oak Hill, Florida, United States
A longtime expat relearning the footwork of life in America