Wednesday, January 9, 2008

R.I.P. Eduardo Gonzales

You may have noticed that this is my first blog post in a couple of weeks.  I didn't mean to abandon this, just circumstances arose and writing felt beyond the realm of possibility.

You see, my old man passed away two days before Christmas.  It wasn't entirely a surprise - he'd had two heart attacks earlier in the year, but still...

Perhaps it's no coincidence that I started this project when I did.

My Dad was the last of his kind: a real gentleman, full of manners and style.  He was born in Mexico City to a Polish Jewish mother and a Mexican shoemaker who relocated to Los Angeles when he was still a baby.   Perhaps because of his immigrant heritage, and perhaps because of his nature, he was hard-working and always eager to prove himself, but equally he was drawn to glamour and pizzazz.

He worked, as much as he could, as a piano player.  He had some success in the fifties and sixties, playing with a studio band, and even wrote a couple of numbers that you might recognize.  It was the royalties from these that kept him going when in later years, he just didn't get the gigs.

In his last years, he suffered from ill-health that wore down his spirit.  He would frequently say there was nothing left for him in this world except the grave.  I know the feeling, and I've lived only half the time he did.

He loved jazz, he loved a good taco, he loved beautiful women.  He always dressed well.  

Sometimes I wondered how he wound up with a son like me.  I know he did too...

Dad, I'm going to miss you.

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