Ken & Andie (part 4)
It was a two day wake and visitation. Hundreds of people came, so many from our school, work friends and customers. Some because they cared. Some who fed on the macabre, hoping to see a mangled body. Some who fed on other peoples sorrow and drank their tears like nectar. Some who enjoyed large groups of people and used these events to mingle and be seen. Some who I never expected, like the cop who admonished my brother for driving his Volkswagen bug, half on the road and half on the sidewalk. So many people knew him. He was one of “those” people. Funny and charming, people liked him right away, impish, naughty, but deep in soul, we had been tempered by a thing or two.
There were flowers everywhere. The sweet, green, cloying scent assaulted the brain and clung to every stitch of clothing. The smell was a living thing that swirled around and carried the chatter from one end of the building to the other, then back again. I was numb, yet fully aware, I was in my body, but strangely outside it too. I couldn’t cry. No tears came yet. I was hyper-aware of the moment, numb except for the deep ache in my chest. It was caving in on itself, like a sinkhole, bringing my shoulders forward, my knees up and my head down, sucking my body into this abyss of aloneness and loss. The sudden loss of a huge part of myself and our shared history. Loss of the job I held as his best friend and protector.
The annoying kid was always there, arranging things, directing people, and keeping things going.
My only contribution to the whole service was the request for one song when they asked us to choose music. The organist would play it for the service. Otherwise, he would just play stock music. The only music I could think of is a small LP my father played. Mario Lanza.
The organist Mr. Carlson, sang this so beautifully, it was so powerful and perfect.