What can I say about Tom?
I’ve known Tom since high school.
I went to college with Tom.
When Tom and I are across the table from each other at a café or diner, I know I am going to have a wonderful time.
Tom personifies ‘down to earth.’ He doesn’t have an ounce of pretension in him.
(Tom and I a few years ago at my ‘office’ at the café)
During the course of his life, he’s had his share of tragedy and challenge and yet he has risen above it time and time again.
He manages to be plain-spoken without being blunt to the point of rudeness. He is genuinely friendly.
No one lives The Golden Rule like Tom.
I suspect he may be nuts. Only someone with deep-seated problems can appear this normal and cheerful every day.
From what I can tell, he doesn’t experience mood swings. While I’ve seen him ticked now and again, I cannot say that I have seen Tom truly angry in all the 43 years I’ve known him.
But… sometimes the mask slips and I can see the loonie lurking behind. There are tell-tale signs of wackiness.
To give you just one example… Tom wears shorts. And when I say, “Tom wears shorts” I’m here to tell you… Tom wears shorts!
All the time. Day and night. All year round.
On blustery winter days, in walks Tom in khaki shorts, a broad smile on his face. I’ve seen Tom strolling down the street in basketball shorts during a snow storm.
You may have everyone else fooled, Tom… but I am on to you. You’re as loopy as I am. You just manage to hide it better!
I’ve given it a lot of thought over the last couple of days.
My life would be all the poorer and less colourful without Tom in it.