Eric, it’s now been almost exactly 48 hours since I found out that you have passed from this plane of existence. I will never forget you, my brother, and I know that I will never enjoy, as much as I did with you, staying up until all hours of the morning just talking about all of the assorted things that we did over the last decade or so. Never again, at least in this life, will I share the hearty laughs that we shared, the invective-filled rants against all of the stupidity, avarice and greed of those we mutually loathed. (They know who they are and I promise to carry on your avowed fight against them.)
You were a true modern-day Renaissance man. Never have I met an individual who had been dealt such a crappy hand at the beginning of the poker game of life, only to turn it into a royal straight flush. Your knowledge, wisdom, ingenuity and creativeness were decades ahead of your young years. I consider myself a truly lucky man to have ever had the privilege of knowing you and even more so for having you, of all six-billion-plus people on this ball of dirt, call me “friend”.
It tears my soul apart knowing that I will never again be able to come home from a shitty day at work, sit down, sign onto the ‘Net and have a friendly “Eh, white bullah!” waiting on me to put a smile on my face and make me forget about the real world and its sundry problems , if only for a brief while. Without even trying (or probably knowing), you brought a kind of joy to life that can’t be put into words. Even though you lived almost exactly on the other side of the planet, it seemed like you were my best friend living next door. The all-too-brief time that I got to spend with you when you came to visit will forever be ingrained deep in my mind as some of the best I’ve ever spent with a good friend. I only wish that I had had the means and wherewithal to have been able to spend more time with you. I envy your friends in Australia who were fortunate to be able to share their lives with you in the real world, but I know that they have got to be missing you as much, if not more, than I do. (At this time, I can’t see how that is possible, but they were lucky enough to have been able to know and grow to love you in person for so much longer.)
Eric, I hope to meet you on the other side of this mortal vale and share eternity drinking your world-famous rum. Forgive me for not letting you know how much you meant to me in this life, but know that you will never be forgotten. Ever. You were taken away from us far too soon. Rest in peace, brother. There will never be another like you.
F.E.T.E., one more time, my friend.