The notes

Dear Dan,

I don’t know why I suddenly thought about this after 5 tears. You wrote notes before you left. I don’t know how long before. I can’t imagine writing them. But then, I can’t imagine committing suicide either. Dwelling on your thoughts and feelings surrounding the writing of the notes sends me into a downward spiral, so I won’t do that.

However, the police told me about the note in your wallet. You wrapped your note and i.d. in cling wrap. That was the part that made the planning aspect of your suicide really hit home. There was no way to put that down as “spur of the moment.” Another thing that brought it home was having to park on the 5th floor of the parking garage in town. I never spent much time up on the top floor, so I never realized how high the wall was surrounding the parking area. There’s no way to accidentally fall unless you climb up first. That showed me intent.

Brian had a key to your place and went in to make sure there were no animals that needed to be fed. He found the notes you left to people. The general message ended with something he didn’t understand. “Suicide is painless — M*A*S*H.” I guess Brian never saw M*A*S*H. I explained the song and the scene. By the way, bro, you so missed the point of that song and the scene. Just sayin’.

I have to take exception with the idea of suicide being painless. Maybe for the person committing the act, but not for the survivors. I understand you were talking about you. Yeah, I got that, but let me tell you — for those of us left behind, there is a world of pain and hurt. Did you know that everyone was worried about Little David? He looked upon you as a father figure. It almost killed him — literally. The stress caused his disease to worsen. That and the fact he didn’t care enough to take care of himself while he was depressed. Of course his boss didn’t help by saying, “I know how you feel. I lost my dog last year.” Say, what?

So just a little FYI, in case you haven’t clued to this yet — when I meet up with you on the other side, I’m first going to hug the stuffing out of you, then I’ll smack you upside your head. “Don’t you ever do that to us again!” will probably come in there somewhere, too. Mom is going to turn you over her knee, so be prepared. Fair warning. From sister to brother — “Someone’s gonna get it.”

I love you, bro.

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