ben vandgrift · on living the dream



"there ought to be spinwheels," she said.

"spinwheels?" i smiled.

"those colored square flowers on a stick. foil and a straw, and they spin when the wind blows. you know, spinwheels."


"yeah, whatever."

"why pinwheels?"

"they just always seemed so sad. i always think of spinwheels when someone dies. one little spinwheel slowing down, with no more wind to turn it."

a friend of mine died recently. derek meredith. he was 32. died in his sleep—apnia.

you've probably never heard me mention him, even though i think about him a lot. he was one of two real friends i had at bethel. we hadn't talked in years—not since i missed his mother's funeral. i didn't find out until after.

i drove by the house where he used to live on my way back to lexington recently, wondered what had become of him. at the time, the last i'd heard he was in louisville somewhere, working on cars. turns out that he'd moved back, and he was in the house as i drove by.

i should've stopped in. on the off chance. we could've spoken one last time. he might've introduced me to his wife and child. i could've apologized for missing his mother's funeral.

and for missing his. i didn't find out until after.

-ben 9.19.2008

written: Sep 19 2008