Me and the late John Harrelson, May 27, 2011, outside the Press in Claremont. As I wrote in my tribute column last week:
My favorite memory is of an afternoon we spent at the Press, first at lunch, then outside, perched on the window ledge, watching the world go by as he smoked. The Press’ satellite radio was playing rock oldies, and we played “Name That Tune,” competing to guess the artist and title before the other, then trading opinions and trivia about the bands.
A man named John Thomas posted this photo to Harrelson pal John Neiuber’s Facebook page last week, following my column’s appearance, with the notation “Name That Tune.” Neiuber says: “He told me he was outside listening to you guys, enjoying the banter, and just happened to capture the moment.”
I was so surprised and touched, I about fell over when Neiuber walked up to me and told me about the photo’s existence. I have a vague memory of noticing someone had just taken our photo, someone Harrelson knew, but I quickly forgot the whole thing. That someone thought to take this photo and then thought it worth preserving — and knew who I was and connected it to my column two years later, for that matter — blows me away. Thank you, John Thomas.
Now if only I had audio! But that’s okay. I have my memories.
(That’s a copy of a Penguin edition of Mark Twain’s short stories by my side, incidentally.)