Calvin and Hobbes, John & John


I never considered myself a tattoo guy, I really didn’t. Yet, over 20 years ago, I found myself grimacing in pain and getting my first tattoo. I sat in the chair wondering what I had gotten myself into. Yet, I pushed forward. After all, I was not just getting any tattoo. The one that was going on my calf was a tribute. It was the exact same one that my brother John had on his calf. John had died and I so desperately wanted some thing or some way to hold onto him.

The guy doing the tattoo? He was quite an imposing figure but he was a big guy with a twinkle in his eye. He was trying to reassure me that I could handle it, he chose to use the aged old tactic of mocking me. Somehow it worked. I made it through that experience and never forgot a moment of it. The gentle giant that did my tattoo was my soon to be brother-in-law John.

Today, the tattoo and that experience serve a dual purpose. They will forever remind me of my brother and my brother-in-law. Two men who left this world way too soon. Yet, really don’t so many of us leave this world “too soon”?

Too Soon – to do all we want to 

   Too Soon – to tell people how we really feel

Too Soon – to understand what really is important in this world

So, before it becomes “too soon”  go do what you have always wanted to do and tell people what you want to tell them and understand THIS:

“Big” John’s life mattered. He loved big and lived big. He made choices perhaps we all couldn’t understand but did what he thought was best and made the most of what he had. There is a great lesson for us all…

Life is precious. Enjoy it.

Life is tough. Overcome it.

Life is whatever you make out of it. So go make a masterpiece.

Perhaps your masterpiece will look like Calvin and Hobbes and perhaps not.

At the end of the day it doesn’t matter what it looks like. The masterpiece is yours, just like it was John’s.

So go out there with a twinkle in your eye and shine brightly my friend…just like John.









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