David

I got an email titled “Sad news.”

It is from my friend Tom.

“Hate to break this to you in an e-mail, but David died yesterday. He was found in his home when he did not report to work, dead of an apparent heart attack. I will forward funeral information in case you can attend. “

David and I worked together twenty years ago before my life as a medic. There were four of us. David, Tom, Rusty and me. We called ourselves “The Road Show” as our job was to drive our boss all over the state. Tom was the advance man, David and I the camper drivers, and Rusty the backup driver.

David’s parents were very wealthy, but he’d worked for awhile as a doorman at a ritzy hotel in Washington. He was good at taking care of details, making people feel important. He’d get up at five in the morning drive twenty miles to a small drug store newsstand that carried the boss’s favorite juice, a concoction called Park Avenue Punch, so when the boss was thirsty, David would reach into the cooler and produce it for him. The camper was always immaculate, gassed, washed, and vacuumed. Even the shit tank dumped.

He was a good hearted, crazy guy. When he went out on dates, sometimes he’d rent a limo and take his date to the McDonald’s drive through. He used to like to go into strip clubs, walk up to the dancer, hand her a ten, turn around with a spin, drop down and do a split, then walk out. He once innocently offered the boss’s busty daughter five dollars if she would just show him her breasts. He went on a vacation at Hedonism, and came back with pictures of himself standing bare-assed on the beach with some women he’d met. His favorite movie was “Fast Times at Ridgemont High.” He could do dead on impersonation of Sean Penn as Spicoli. He also liked “Ferris Buelher’s Day Off.” After we’d drop the boss off at night, he’d pop The Who’s “Teenage Wasteland” into the tape deck, and he’d play a perfect Keith Moon air drums as he drove.

Some nights when we’d been on the road late and were scheduled for an early start the next morning, I’d crash at his parent’s place. He’d stay up watching TV, a tequila bottle on the table next to him. I think he had insomnia.

In later years, he went to law school, and got a job in his father’s firm, but he had problems with drugs and alcohol. He quit and the last I had heard was working as a pool boy at a fancy country club. But Tom, when I spoke to him on the phone, said David had cleaned up and was working again as a lawyer and doing well for himself. He’d been living down in Florida.

I had completely lost touch with him.

How many times have I gone into a house and seen a cold stiff body on the floor?

I run the six second strip of asystole and note the time.

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