10/11/16 - Charlie in 500 Words (or Less)

10/11/16 - Charlie in 500 Words (or Less)

Let's flashback to 2004 for a moment. I was living in a cramped apartment full of mismatched furniture and scattered guitar cases with Luke and our mother. I was halfway through university, where I was not studying how to be a songwriter, (like I wanted to), but instead how to play music I was uninspired by, by uninspired teachers. 

Being perpetual apartment dwellers, my family never had the luxury of owning a pet, as dictated by Section 7.14 paragraph two, line 8, blah blah blah of our latest lease agreement. My mother always went embarrassingly all out on holidays. Papercut souls from fumbling fingers would open mountains of everything we ever wanted and things we did not even know we wanted, while my mother instructed us on what we should open next. 

And then Charlie enters from stage left (applause, applause). I named Charlie after Charlie Christian, and Luke named Charlie after Charlie Parker. We're both correct. The woman at the pet store convinced my mother that Charlie's breed did not bark, thus making him a good stealth apartment dog. This my  friends, was not true. Yet still, while humming the Mission Impossible theme, we carried a groaning canvas totebag from apartment door to park, and park to apartment door on a daily basis. 

Flash forward to 2016 – twelve years of chasing dream after dream like falling stars across the American northeast. My wife left for the last time, Charlie and my mother were recent widows, and Luke had moved home; (but these are all stories for another time.) The years had afforded the puppy trade in his brown coat for a white snout; while I finally traded in my hollowbodies for a telecaster and a notepad. 

When I first moved home, I was so depressed I couldn't get out of bed. Much to the delight of Charlie, he had his old friend to nap with everyday; much to my delight, I actually had a friend I could rely on again. As the winter turned to spring, I slowly pulled out of the hibernation of seasonal depression, and started working on getting the Lonesome into gear again. I moved to the kitchen table, Charlie moved to the spot at my feet. 

Last week, Charlie passed on naturally. I'm still beyond the words to express the way I feel, but I think these will do for now: thank you Charlie for being my friend when no one else wanted to.

Chad Gosselin