Thursday, May 22, 2014

My Friend Dave Died Today

David Zabludowski

I started writing this blog around March 11th, the day Dave first went into the hospital.  I didn't have a title for it, because I didn't know what the end of the story would be.   Now I know.

We've known each other about 20 years.  His best friend was a friend of a friend I knew when I lived  in Orange County.  Dave, his partner Kris and our mutual friend Phil moved in the apartment below me when we lived in Golden Hill.  It took a while for our friendship to grow, Dave eventually became a client of mine as well.  Sometimes days, weeks would pass without us talking or seeing each other but we always picked right up where we left off.  We shared a love of anything Andy Warhol, most everything about Divine and anything kitschy.   He was always giving me funky little presents like a Magic Earring Ken doll, Andy Warhol Tomato soup cans, tons of rainbow antenna balls, Warhol Perrier bottles,  a Kardashian key chain, just silly things that he knew I would find amusing.  I still use one of my $2 wallets he bought me at a gas station in Arkansas when I asked for a fake Louis or Gucci from one of his trips to New York.  Oh and this ugly rhinestone encrusted box that looks like a rat.   I have that box on my dresser right where I can see it.  It’s the thought that he always had me somewhere in his mind that really summed up how Dave felt about his friends.   

Many of us were at the hospital in Coronado everyday for hours just to be nearby in case something good, or bad happened.  Of course his boyfriend Nava never left his side, even sleeping at the hospital overnight.  His father Dan and his wife flew in from Arkansas, his friend since high school Paul came from Wisconsin, another long time friend Len came from San Francisco. Heather, being a mother herself kind of became all of our mommy just with her presence.  Even Dave's former boyfriend of 18 1/2 years Kris was there. Kat who used to live in Coronado (Miss Coronado 2000) knew the hospital inside and out.  We were all prepared for the worst and hoping for the best.

Dave seemed to be getting better, so the hospital sent him home but the trips to dialysis and other Dr appointments seemed to put an extra strain on Dave then things got really bad again and he was re admitted to the hospital.  They finally transferred him to a skilled nursing facility or some may know as a rehabilitation hospital.  So he could gain the strength to go home again.  Unfortunately things continued to get worse and worse by the week, then by the day,

Dave and I spent an Easter together a couple of years ago watching old movies and eating cooked ham from Albertson's right of the platter with our fingers…oh and don’t forget the drinking.   Usually a lot of drinking when we were together.  That was a great day, just doing nothing but hanging out together.  Tomorrow is Easter and today Dave went back into the ER.   No ham and silly movies for us this year.

We all have our faults and some of you may know Dave as “that asshole friend” of mine, or that jerk or many other labels friends have given him over the years mostly on Facebook and occasionally after meeting him in person.  Dave could be all of those things at times however he was ALWAYS a friend to me, and that’s truly what mattered.  He really was a thoughtful  man that would go out of his way to do anything for a friend.  His French Bulldog named Rocky may even be more popular with my Facebook friends than Dave was.

Dave wasn't great at showing his emotions but I remember one late night teary eyed phone call after I was hospitalized.   He said he already lost one best friend he wouldn't be able to lose another (or something to that effect)   He made me promise him I wouldn't die, and he wouldn't let me off the phone until I made him that promise.  I think it was the first time Dave said I love you, without some other silly tagline to follow.

It gives me great comfort to know that Dave had someone special in his life at the end, that cared for him very deeply.

Its just so sad to think you will never hear from or see someone ever again.

Love you Dave, love your hair, hope you win.

I think we were out celebrating Dave's birthday 
in this photo at Urban Mo's

Dave's beloved Rocky

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