The Best Of Things.

One of the greatest American films of all time (in my humble opinion) contains the following line, “Remember Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”

Well, as much as I hate to disagree with Andy Dufresne… I have to.

As many of you know, I recently lost a dear friend, a brother-in-arms, which has actually strengthened the bonds between myself and those closest to me. You see, while I consider all of you my friends, in the so-called “real world” there are only a few people who truly know the real me.

Pity those poor souls, won’t you?

But returning to the matter at hand, one of my dear friends recently confirmed (after it appeared on “the Facebook”) to me that he was entering into the bonds of holy matrimony. It was a much-needed reminder that, regardless of the tragedies that fate deems fit to throw in the way of the path we travel… life endures.

In other words, friends, life goes on. And where there is life, there is hope.

And love.

I remember the look on my friend’s face when he first introduced me to his beloved; there was a glow that emanated from his core and burst out from his eyes. He could have illuminated the Falls themselves for eternity. I recall that this struck me so vividly because we’d both seen our share of tragedy in our individual lives. And of course, at that time we were both forced to stand by helpless as our dear friend, Rockin’ Ronnie withered away right in front of us a little more each day until he finally stepped off this mortal coil all-together.

Losing Ron hit the hotel and especially the Bell department, like a freight rain of emotion, but it’s tore Rockin’ Ronnies’ best friends to shreds.

But my good friend was blessed enough to find a light to guide him out of the darkness he found himself slipping into when the news broke. His soon-to-be bride is a living beacon of hope, of love, of life itself. And that hope will never die.


Image result for shawshank redemption quotes

This quote really doesn’t apply to a blog, does it?  I have to start putting more effort into these things…


This is a hard world to live in. We forge connections to one another to sustain us. To help us thrive. To ensure laughter is always present n our lives. To ensure we always have someone there to kill a big-ass spider.

We forge connections to one another on an intimate level to ensure we have someone to battle for the covers at night, someone to share the couch with, someone to bring us soup when mucus is rushing out of our nasal cavities as fever thrusts us into delirium.

Is it any wonder they also call me, “Hook, the Honeydripper”?

Yes, sex is a major component in the intimate connections we forge (didn’t think I was going to forget the  hump-humpy thing, did you?) but what is sex without love? Just push-ups on top of someone covered in Cool Whip and bound by soft velvet rope.

What can I say? I’m a romantic.

But I’m drifting (I do that) so let’s get back on point: Hope gives us strength and helps lead us to love. Love gives us hope that we apply to our daily lives. In short, friends, hope really is the best of things but hope and love go hand-in-hand.

So here’s to hope. Here’s to love. Here’s to Frank and Maureen. I’ve made my ultimate, unbreakable connection to another human being but your love has given me renewed hope for the rest of humanity. People always say this, but from the bottom of my frozen Canadian heart, I wish you both the happiest of unions.

What? Anyone can plunk down ten bucks for a piece of Hallmark dreck.

See you in the lobby, kids…

About The Hook

Husband. Father. Bellman. Author of The Bellman Chronicles. Reader of comic books and observer and chronicler of the human condition. And to my wife's eternal dismay, a mere mortal and non-vampire. I'm often told I look like your uncle, cousin, etc. If I wore a hat, I'd hang it on a hat rack in my home in Niagara Falls, Canada. You can call me The Hook, everyone else does.
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23 Responses to The Best Of Things.

  1. Theresa says:

    And then there was light! I’m so glad you’ve had a “brightening”. You deserve it Hook! Life can be like a “box of chocolates”, so glad there is now love to light the way for all of you who have suffered loss lately! Keep writing and I’ll keep checking in!

  2. You and I have, I hope, connected. Connections are really important. One of the problems with TFF in the US is that he doesn’t connect. He uses.
    I wish you well my friend. I wish you well.

  3. I enjoyed the break in the clouds, Hook. There are more such stories out there. You will find them.

  4. dianaepona says:

    “When the world says, “Give up,” Hope whispers, “Try it one more time.” Great piece, Hook.

  5. Doug in Oakland says:

    From those Canadian guys who call themselves “Rush”:

    Time and motion
    Flesh and blood and fire
    Lives connect in webs of gold and razor wire
    Spin a thread of precious contact
    Squeeze in all that you can find
    Spontaneous relations
    And the long-enduring kind

    That was from 1996, I believe, a bear of a year that all evidence would support the idea that we managed to survive. Those of us who did, I mean.
    But we’re still here. I suggest we try to make the most of it
    Tell your friends I said congratulations if you like.

  6. umashankar says:

    It is hard for me not to think of Emily Dickinson’s elegant poem here:

    Hope” is the thing with feathers –
    That perches in the soul –
    And sings the tune without the words –
    And never stops – at all –

    And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
    And sore must be the storm –
    That could abash the little Bird
    That kept so many warm –

    I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
    And on the strangest Sea –
    Yet – never – in Extremity,
    It asked a crumb – of me.

  7. Frank says:

    The redhead and I are touched greatly by your words, Hook. You are a skilled writer and a dear friend and I am forever grateful to have you as one of my closest friends. Just as soon as we can untether ourselves from these velvety ropes and wash off the mounds of cool whip we will give you a big hug of thanks.

    Always remember that hope redeems the phrase, “four-letter word.”

    Frank and Maureen

  8. I love Shawshank Redemption. No good thing ever dies because we remember it. It stays alive in our memory. Or in the case of your friend, you remember him. I’m so sorry he’s gone. I wish everyone had the gift a friend of mine has of being able to see people who have passed away. I find it comforting to know that even when they’re gone, they’re around with just a wish or a thought.

    Hang in there.

  9. Glad to see there is a small spark of hope in an otherwise desolate world created by your friend’s passing. You deserve to have something positive to hold on to… best wishes Robert. To both the happy couple and you! 😙

  10. Cool Whip? I prefer Hershey’s chocolate syrup myself.

  11. Tara says:

    Well said. I recently had a revelation about drama – and subsequently squashed any attempts it might have to re-enter my life. With that, I continue to remember and acknowledge the miracle of the relationship I have with my first love. Hope is always there – we just have to know where to look for it. ❤

  12. curvyroads says:

    I’m so glad you remember hope and love my friend! 💕

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