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I went to Tanglewood over this weekend to see Prairie Home Companion. It was just like I thought it would be – funny and witty – and as the sun sank low over the horizon and hit me square on with its warmth, I though Hell, this is a great way to spend a weekend.

A few states away, my friend Jeff’s father-in-law breathed his last breath.

He’s been fighting cancer for a number of years now; sometimes it would look like he had it licked, other times it would seem to beat him down. He was in and out of the hospital a number of times. In the end, I hope he wasn’t in pain. I hope he had is family nearby. I hope he died content.

As usual, the death of another gets me thinking about mortality. I won’t go too into it here; those who know me and those who have been in writing club with me know I obsess about it. I dont’ think I’m afraid of death; I’m fascinated by it. Its one of the flips of the cards. One of my friends is going to take his premature daughter home soon. Another friend is pregnant. Another is on the threshold of marriage. My godfather and, most likely, my father are going in for surgery soon. Lives spin away and reverberate against each other, rippling like a million stones thrown into a pond. And that, to me, is a comforting thought.

Best to you Mr. Ebert, wherever you are.

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