Daily Archives: May 7, 2007

Several good terns


These terns were on the north beach on Tybee Island in April. Dean and I took a walk along that beach to find painted buntings and couldn’t figure out how to go inland. We eventually did*, but not before seeing flocks of terns and other shore birds. These guys, though were my favorite. They all seemed cartoonish. Perhaps I’ve seen one too many Disney movie.

* figure out how to go inland that is – we didn’t see any painted buntings, much to my dismay

73. For Todd

My husband called me this morning to tell me that Todd’s wife, Roberta, died last week. I’d only met Roberta once – at their wedding and had not seen Todd since that wedding about 15 years ago. My husband saw him occasionally – usually at work meetings or for lunch. We talked about inviting Todd and his wife for dinner sometime, but never did. They always sent us a Christmas card – we don’t send Christmas cards anymore. All-in-all – we were crummy friends.

We knew Todd in Pittsburgh where he and my husband were grad students at Carnegie Mellon University. We spent a fair amount of time with Todd during those years, then when we both ended up in the DC area, we hung out a bit the first couple of years as we grew accustomed to being grow-ups. Todd was always a good listener, and I think I was a good listener for him. I think we also got along well because we were destined to meet. He and his family used to visit my hometown of Elgin sometimes – they were either related or very good friends of a classmate of mine. Todd also used to spend summers playing in a band in the town where my family has vacationed for years.

He was born with a condition that affected his bones – they didn’t grow correctly. In Pittsburgh he was shorter than me – and he was good natured about it. A few years after moving to DC he had surgery on his hips and the doctor said he could give Todd a few more inches and Todd said, why not? After that Todd teased me that he was finally taller than me. (which is not very hard to be)

Todd’s hobby is music. He was the friend who wanted me to see Mary Chapin Carpenter. He’s also a musician. He’s played the trombone for several big band orchestras in the area, most recently Radio King Orchestra.

If you go to the CD Baby page for RKO, click on the triangle before Night Train (track 10) and you’ll hear him playing his horn.

I didn’t know what big band music was until I met Todd. I had seen the Glenn Miller story, but didn’t realize it was Big Band until I heard Todd’s band playing String of Pearls at a gig once.