|Me and Augie, let's say circa Thanksgiving 1987|
The week before Augie died he was in the hospital, and we knew it wasn't going to be long. I went over there on a Thursday afternoon with my brother. Some of my cousins and my Grandmother, of course were there. We actually had a nice time, as nice as it can be. When Augie threw out one of his off color jokes to a nurse that he had a thing for, we all laughed, but I really wanted to cry. I thought my heart might burst upon realizing this was going to be one of the last wisecracks I was going to hear out of him. He delivered many that afternoon and I desperately clung to and soaked each one up, he really was a genius when it came to one liners. This is another grateful moment folks. I got to hear his perfectly delivered one liners for 34 years. Training myself to be grateful instead of sad in these moments is not easy but necessary.
I have the PO box of the nurse who bared the brunt of his humor. He really liked her a lot, and that is no small feat on her part. She was one of those great nurses: positive, caring and not at all desensitized, at least not towards her patients. Augie wanted to send her some jewelry and then with his passing, the funeral and my laziness nothing was sent to her. He would not be happy with me if he knew I hadn't done this deed for him. I'm going to put together some Lisa August jewelry and write her a nice note, to show my appreciation so she can know that there are people grateful to her this Thanksgiving. Maybe she won't remember him (she probably will), but I will remember her because she gave him comfort when he was the most uncomfortable.
Just to not leave you hanging, she had the word Bell in her name and when she gave him her contact info, he simply told her: 'You could ring my bell anytime'.