— information leafblower

Mr. Pink was the best. Bye buddy!

Back in 2011 when I shut this blog down, I knew in the back of my head that there was going to be one more post I would have to put up here. And sadly, that time has come.

Last Tuesday, March 8th, my wife and I had to say goodbye to my best friend, Mr. Pink.

He got his name from his pink nose.

I have been dreading this day for quite some time. I adopted Mr. Pink way back in 2005, only a few months after moving to D.C. I liked to tell everyone that I didn’t adopt him per se, he picked me. I was at the shelter in Arlington with a pet carrier and the staffer on duty pointed him out to me because the rest of his litter had been adopted. A runt, huh? Do tell.

His name back then was Fred. Everyone in his litter was named after Scooby Doo characters. I spent a minute or two with him and when I paused to talk to the staffer, he hopped in the carrier. He was ready to get the fuck out of that place, so who was I to turn him down? We were inseparable ever since.

my heart melted any time he did this. MELTED.

His passing was a bit sudden and unexpected but again, not really. Mr. Pink suffered a serious heart issue last July and he was probably living on borrowed time since then. When he was diagnosed with his cardiomyopathy, the vet told us the median life expectancy was two years post-diagnosis. We got 7 1/2 months. I knew his time was probably short when we got back from the vet with his diagnosis, so I tried to spend as much quality time as I could with him.

I generally spend my nights editing photos when I come home from concerts and Mr. Pink would always jump up on my desk and make sure to get some quality time before I started editing. Then he would either grab a spot behind my computer while I worked or lay somewhere within eye sight. Whenever I was done editing and started my export, I would hang out with him and wouldn’t go back to the computer until I worked him up into a nice purr.

He always liked to help me when I was using my computer.

I started and ended every day with him. The best part of going to bed each night was our routine. Each night, a few minutes after I finally crawled in bed,  I would wait to hear the pitter patter of his feet just before he jumped up into our bed. He would land on the foot of the bed and then crawl over me until he settled on my chest and I’d spend my last few waking minutes petting him. Every fucking night. Not much made me happier than that. I cherished that time.

And that’s why losing him was so hard. Our routine is shattered and it’s going to take me a long time before things stop feeling broken. Waking up is hard. Going to bed is hard. Leaving for work is hard. Coming home is hard.

Again, heart melting.

We had such a great day on Monday. He ate a full can of wet food (double his normal amount) and spent the night on the couch purring loudly while cuddled up between my wife and me instead of his occupying his normal spot on the ottoman. He was so happy and content. So was I.

When we woke up on Tuesday, we saw that he had peed himself. That’s always a warning sign. He seemed a little out of it, but we cleaned him up, tried to feed him and then went off to work hoping for the best. I spent some time on the floor with him before I left and got him to purr, so I thought that was encouraging.

Yawn!

Mr. Pink always spent his afternoons in our front window waiting for me to come home. I loved seeing him sitting on his perch, scanning back and forth for me and watching him pop up and start talking to me as soon as he saw me. On my walk home from the bus stop on Tuesday I was praying that he would be there, waiting for me. I told myself that if he was in his usual spot, then everything would be OK.

He wasn’t.

When I walked in I noticed that he hadn’t eaten his breakfast, another bad sign. He came downstairs when he heard me walk in, which gave me a glimmer of hope. However, I could see that he was a bit unsteady on his feet and not his normal self. I tried to get him to eat without success. His breathing was shallow and I could tell he was scared and in pain. I laid beside him on the floor and stroked him gently from head to tail while we waited for my wife to get home.

After navigating rush hour traffic to get out to Fairfax (which is not fun on a regular day, and decidedly less so with your dying cat in the back seat), the vet concurred with us that he was in pain and it would be best to put him down.  He went gently and quietly.

Mr. Pink was my best friend and with all apologies to my wife and family, probably the best and most rewarding relationship I’ve had in my life. I will miss him terribly.

Mr. Pink, assistant DJ. Pick a good one!

Rest In Peace little buddy. Life is not the same without you.

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Mr. Pink, Hard Drive Guardian

Today is the eighth birthday of this here blog, which is kind of incredible when you think about it. I certainly didn’t think this thing would last this long.

But this will be the last birthday I celebrate here. As much as I hate to admit it, I just don’t have time (or energy) to sit down and write like I used to.  Information Leafblower started as a music blog in based in NYC and then became a documentary about how my life fell apart and the steps I took to piece it all back together and eventually thrive here in Washington, D.C. It’s an incredible time capsule and I’ll keep it online and read it over every once in a while. I hope you will too.

A few favorite posts from off the top of my head:

Sea Ray saves music for me
My cat Jarvis dies and people leave me the most amazing comments
Going to Detroit for Grambo’s 30th bday & finally meeting the Whatevs crew
Bill Simmons is a big fan of the Leafblower
Naming Mr. Pink
I get Gilbert Arenas to rate his swag
Underworld at V Fest

Thanks to everyone that passed through my little corner of the interwebs these last 8 years. In the future I’ll still be posting regularly on my photo site as well as occasionally posting about Morrissey and the Celtics on my Tumblr. And there’s always Twitter and Facebook.

Cheers,

Leaf

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(via)

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Much better than the Beyonce version. (via)

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Here’s a video preview of the iTunes LP for Beady Eye’s Different Gear, Still Speeding. It looks like “Man of Misery,” an unreleased Oasis track, will be available as a bonus track. I’m excited to hear a proper version of this song, but still find it funny no one has called Liam on this after he bagged on Noel for intending to use left over Oasis songs for his upcoming solo album. Let us not forget, “The Roller” is an Oasis track from Heathen Chemistry written by Gem.

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Radiohead – Lotus Flower

The new album is available for purchase right now. Although I really like the above song, I am fairly underwhelmed by the album as a whole after one listen.

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I’ve seen a bunch of shows already this year, some good, some bad. In the last two weeks or so it’s been the openers that have impressed me more than the headliners. Here are three bands you should show up early to see when they come to your town:

Young Prisms

I saw these guys open for The Radio Dept and I really liked their hazey/shoegazey sound. Their debut album, Friends For Now, is out now on Kanine Records.
See Also: Young Prisms | Daytrotter Session

No Joy

No Joy opened up the Best Coast / Wavves show last week at the 9:30 and were my favorite band on the bill. Be sure to check out their album Ghost Blonde.
See also: No Joy | Daytrotter Session

Braids

I saw Braids on Friday opening for Baths and was smitten by their sound, a cross between High Places quirky rhythms and Glasser’s vocals. Their debut album, Native Speaker, is out now, also on Kanine Records.
See also: Braids | Daytrotter Session

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Springsteen-4336

A few years ago when I shot Bruce Springsteen at the Verizon Center, I happened to strike up a conversation with the photog standing next to me. It was Linda Davidson from the Washington Post. She was incredibly nice and very gracious, offering me some career advice and just generally being very cool by answering any and all questions I threw her way. This went against most of my interactions with other photogs when I was on assignment for DCist. A majority of the photojournalists I tried to speak to looked down their nose at “bloggers.” Not Linda, she talked me ear off until the lights went down and Bruce strode on to the stage. I didn’t forget that.

Last year when I was covering the White House Correspondents Dinner for Washingtonian, there was a big kerfuffle at the door which kept many photogs from getting a good spot to shoot the red carpet arrivals. Linda got caught up in this and was one of the last people let in the door, meaning she had one of the worst vantage points to shoot from. I was standing in front of her on a stool much taller than hers, so I offered to switch stools with her so she could shoot over my shoulder and still get some front page material for the Post. She was very thankful and even sent an email that night (while she was editing photos on site!) to my assignment editors at the Post telling them what I had done and how big a help it had been for her.

Today word got out that she and fellow Postie Leila Fadel were arrested in Egypt while they were covering the demonstrations and political unrest. I sincerely hope they are OK and will be released soon. My thoughts are with them.

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A look at the numbers for January 2011:

Concerts attended:
11

Tearsheets:
Lower Dens @ Kennedy Center
Yoro Ndiaye @ Kennedy Center
Lyle Lovett & John Hiatt @ The Birchmere
Two Door Cinema Club @ 9:30 Club
Dismemberment Plan @ Black Cat
The Concretes @ RnR Hotel
Ari Hest @ Barns at Wolf Trap
DMV Bounce Beat Awards @ D.C. Armory
Lissie @ 9:30 Club
Best Coast & Wavves @ 9:30 Club

Other:
Little Dragon @ Black Cat

Best show:
The DMV Bounce Beat Awards was unlike any show I have been to. It was a fascinating look  into the youth culture here in D.C. Chris Richards article can explain it much better than I can.

Total number of shows for 2011:
11

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