On Thursday morning I heard that an associate of mine named Mark Trent passed away.
I couldn’t make the claim that I knew Mark very well. We were in Maxwell together back in the early part of 2002, and I’ve seen him a few times since then. We were close in the way that two people who genuinely like each other but don’t cross paths a lot in their every day lives are (the way I am with pretty much all of the Jobsite crew, to be honest). His death didn’t affect me so much in the sense that I felt that I lost a close friend, but I feel that the world lost a genuinely good person.
Mark was a genuinely good person, and a damned talented entertainer. Working with him was a pleasure and I had always hoped to do so again in the future.
I will not, unfortunately, have that opportunity.
There was a memorial for him last night that I had planned to attend, but the illness that has been dogging me for the last few days decided to rear it’s ugly head again last night. I was in bed by 8:30 and slept through the whole night. I had a tribute of my own, though, the day I heard of his passing. I put in my Maxwell soundtrack and remembered the experiences I had with Mark during that process. I cried. A lot. More than I really thought I would have.
I’m just tired of burying my friends. I’ve been so to many funerals already in my life. I know people my age who have never even been to a funeral, but I’ve been to more than I can recall. So many good people passing on.
Mark was the first homosexual that Alex was directly exposed to. He had met them before, but the issue had never really come up. At one point, however, we were talking about Tara and Willow in “Buffy The Vampire Slayer.” Alex mentioned them kissing and said it was gross. When I asked him why he told me it was because “girls weren’t supposed to kiss girls.” I explained to Alex that it was not gross, and that there was nothing wrong with same sex relationships. I used Mark and Peter as an example, as Alex had been exposed to them quite a bit and they had all gotten along quite well. I can’t think of a better person to have used as evidence that there was no reason to fear or distrust someone just because they had a different preference than us.
Mind you, this is the conversation that led Alex to declare that he was gay. “I love you,” he said, “and you’re a boy. So I must be gay.”
I had to clear that one up. I asked him to wait a few years before he made that decision.
From what I heard, Mark fought hard for his life at the end. Much like others who were following the saga, I didn’t expect to hear that he had died at all. It just didn’t seem possible. Mark was too strong willed to let death overcome him. I truly thought there was no way that he wouldn’t pull out of it.
Now he’s gone, and his loss is felt keenly by many here in the Tampa Bay area.
Present company included.
Rest well, Mark. You will be missed.
Just as an update for all of you who have been concerned : I am still sick. I do not believe that I have the flu. I thought I did at one point, but I’m pretty sure that was just a headache. The cold has moved down to my chest now and I’m coughing a lot, but I have definitely improved. I am going back to work today. My co-worker Dawn is over in Europe right now, so I won’t be directly exposed to someone and risk getting them ill. I’ll just try to keep to myself and not make anyone else sick. Unfortunately I don’t think it will be any warmer at the office. Last time I was there it was really cold, and last week my boss was complaining to me that his fingers were going numb.
What is it with offices not wanting to use the heat anyway??
I have a few space heaters on order and they should arrive on Wednesday. Just in time for things to be warm again. At least if it gets cold Wednesday night or Thursday morning I’ll have some way to warm up the rooms while company is here.
Wow. It’s only two days until Christmas Eve. I have several things still in the mail that I really hope get here in time. Tonight I have to start power cleaning my house to get things ready. I’ll finish up the cleaning tomorrow night and hit the grocery store on Wednesday when I get off of work (we only have a half day). There should be a pretty decent turn out on Wednesday night.
Sorry if this has been a disjointed entry, but I’m still kind of out of it. Hopefully I can get some work done today.