No matter which alter ego you know him by (Jay, Quig(s), James, Jimi Jam (Baile), James America, Jimhael…the list goes on), you know you can count on Jimi. I’ve known Jimi for a few years now, and when I think back, there are a few very special memories that stand out in my mind as classic Jimi moments. I like to think of them as life lessons he’s taught me, and I wanted to share a few of those:
Lesson One: Don’t try to ambush Jimi
Part 1 – The Phantom
When Jimi, AJ and I lived together in our first “real” apartment, there was often a race home after a night out for whatever leftovers were in the fridge (usually from AJ and Andrea). All in good fun, it eventually evolved into a game to try to hide your food if you wanted it to be there when you did get home. After a few tries, I thought I had Jimi beat by carefully “hiding” an item (a sub sandwich? calzone? I suspect Jimi could tell you) in the back of the fridge, and placing various different beers in particular locations in front of it. I arrived home later to find everything just as I’d left it. Or so I thought…after moving everything out of the way, all I was left with was an empty box 😦
Part 2 – The Legend of James America
Shortly after Jimi proclaimed himself as James America, he made a name for himself at Common Ground. We were all waiting in line to get in for another night of DJ Phat Mike’s jams when a car pulled up, window rolled down, and an armed assailant sticking out the window. Before the “drive by” could go down, James America unselfishly through himself into the line of fire, grabbing the weapon out of the shooter’s hand before anyone else could even react. In slow motion, I watched James America throw the weapon to the ground and crush it with his foot. It turns out the assailant was armed with a toy gun, and even had the audacity to protest that James America now owed him a gun. The car of yahoos was promptly given a verbal lashing by James America and, wisely, they quickly sped off before they could be apprehended. The bouncers were quite impressed and granted James America free entry. I was saddened to find that the Legend of James America has not lived on with the bouncers of Allston, as the gentlemen working the door last week had claimed to have never heard the tale.
Lesson Two: Show your friends you care
My grandfather passed away in June of 2006. My aunt and uncle, who lived in the house behind my grandparents’, decided that since they had all the extra help around, the morning of the wake would be an opportune time to replace the pool liner in their pool, a job they had been meaning to do for some time. Not that my brothers and I had much say in the matter, but we did our part and helped out. As many home projects do, it was taking longer than expected and it was nearing the point where we’d have to call it quits to get ready and head over to the wake; about then (I believe I was trying to stretch out the top of the liner to fit the side of the pool at the time) I got a call from my Dad, who had left with my mom much earlier, saying he thought that he’d seen Jimi show up at the funeral home. I was quite shocked, thinking it couldn’t be and told him it must be someone else that looked like him. Sure enough when I got to the funeral home, there was Jimi, AJ, Andrea and Ali (a friend of Jimi’s from WIT), who had driven down 200 miles from Boston to show their love and support. It was quite the surprise as I’m certain I’d told them before I left it wasn’t necessary and that I’d see them when I got back a few days later, but sure enough they were there.
Jimi, I thank you for these lessons!
I hope this can become sort of a running series, and I’d invite anyone else who has a Jimi moment to please share that.
Finally, Jimi has always been there for all of us, so we owe him nothing less. I’m recovering from ACL surgery this past spring (guess who was among those to visit the night I got home from the hospital?) and have been doing my best to walk, run, bike, hike, etc. as much as I can to get healthy again. To do my part, I’m very pleased to announce the kick off of my initiative, Track the Huff. I’m pledging to donate 25 cents for every mile I log, and will be posting tracks to account for miles as best I can (you’ll have to take my word for it on any indoor stuff). I’ll be backdating to Jimi’s diagnosis on August 26th of this year (301.21 miles and $75.30 to date…time to get moving) and will continue indefinitely.
But wait, there’s more…if you email me now at firstname.lastname@example.org, I’m offering the exciting opportunity to join me in my quest. You can choose to sponsor my miles (at whatever rate you’d like) or pledge your own miles (at whatever rate you’d like), just let me know.