Saturday, November 26, 2016

The last holdout

Cherry Creek is an area in Denver. Upscale. For those people in the world who like to shop, and like "high end brands", it's the place to be. Shop. Eat Dine. Be Seen. Visit.

There are many words for this pocket of town. I've also mentioned many times, one of my favorite places , but not a favorite place for the shopping. A favorite place for a burger dive joint.

I swear, you can smell the smoke in the furniture, from when smoking cigarette's was allowed inside.

The stale beer. You can smell that too.

When visitors come to town - I make sure they see many scenic places in Denver and the surrounding area. The Cherry Cricket is always on the list.

We've all wondered how long it could last. A run down bar in the middle of an area with 5 million dollar condos. The "Cricket" swore they weren't going any where. The rest of us always knew it was a matter of time.

Wednesday night. There was a kitchen fire. The Cricket is closed until further notice.

Which means:

The Cricket we all know and love - isn't opening back up.

Yes, it will probably re-open. It's sitting on a piece of land worth millions. It will be clean. The burgers probably won't be as good and there might actually be some light in the place.

But the stories I have from this place......

I met Peter Pan there.
The man who became Nolan's Godfather
A great girlfriend whom I visited New York City with for the first time
A few more girlfriends, a few more guy friends.
A few celebrities
I've closed the place down
I've been there early when the Broncos had an early game, and they let us open the place up.
Friends of my sons have worked there
A place that still has parking for free - and decent parking (as parking is not one of my better attributes).
And if you read the article, I referred to at the begining. A place that let's you change other people's lives.

A place that changed my life. As all experiences change your life. All of our lives.

The Cricket is closed until further notice. Thanks for holding out.

Not sure where I'm going to watch the Broncos game next week. But hey Cricket, thanks for hanging in there.

Friday, November 11, 2016


Usually, when I write a story about someone I love, whom has passed, the words come quickly. The words come flowing out of me. Screaming, like they need to tell the world about the person I loved and lost.

This time, I’ve had no words. I’ve had no words about a lost young life. A life we lost to demons bigger than us all.

I’ve searched. And searched for words. Searched for emotions other than sadness and anger.

It's not that I didn't want to tell you about my friend. I didn't know how.

I truly now understand how depression affects people. The understanding of not wanting to get out of bed. 

Or truly put one foot in front of the other.

Not that I haven’t felt moments of despair and blues. I’ve had them. (previous to this). We all have them. But moments of not knowing how I’m going to make it until the end of the day.

I now get you.

And dammit Hil. I’m mad.

I’m angry. And, I’m very, very sad.

One of my Mother’s Day “kids” committed suicide the last week in August. NO ONE saw this one coming. Yes, I thought I knew depression. Yes, I understand people with internal battles we will never understand.

BUT, USUALLY, we know. Or think we have an idea.

We like to think we have an idea this person was battling things that were hard.

So, instead of being angry. Or mad. Or sad.

Hil, this is what I have to say about you:

I will always miss you.       

You still owe me!

You grandparents made sure you had seen all 50 states. In your short life (and yes, I know, you didn’t believe 18 was short)

Every Mother’s Day since you were 10 years (or maybe 8) we had all run a 5k together and had a cook-out at my house. You were a junior in high school and you and your grandfather had been on a cruise to Alaska together. The only state you had left was Hawaii.

We had all run our Mothers’ Day run and we are sitting in the stands discussing this situation. I turned to your grandfather and said – what is the state you are missing? Your grandfather replied. Actually, wait, you replied “Hawaii” that’s the only state left.

I then turned to your grandfather and said, “That sounds like a perfect graduation gift to me. “

You went with your mom, brothers and grandparents to Hawaii the summer you died. (And selfishly, and because of course, this is about me, I drove you to the airport)

It was also your grandfathers fiftieth state to visit.

You were his best friend. Not trying to make you feel guilty. Trying to explain what the rest of us were feeling.

By far, your funeral and picking your parents and your ashes up at the airport was the HARDEST thing I’ve EVER been through in my life.

I’m sorry you felt you weren’t loved enough to get you through that day. Or today. Or tomorrow. Or the next day.

Because, let me tell you Richard Hilstad Lee Abbott. YOU were loved. Are loved.

Always will be.

Rest in Peace my sweet boy.