Posted by: johannalee | October 9, 2009

We always had each others’ backs

I met Joey some 7 years ago at  Ardys’s
house. She was a periodic couch crasher there
at the house.
I was doing some work at the house at the time.
WHen I first met Joe, I pretty much ignored
her and kept doing my work.  She was surprised
that someone could be that focussed on work.
Eventually we started talking at this gathering
for a holiday party at the house.  I remember
this vividly because Joe, Thyme and me were
laughing about all the political dyke drama through
the community.  Both Jo and I were doing skits
and making fun of these situations.  We laughed
and laughed for hours.  A bond was made that night.  It soon occurred to me that I should make
a film about Joey and her adventures….
We started that in 03 and it screened in 04.
Throughout the years, I saw Joe through some
very dark periods, spending time  in jails, being rushed to the hospital countless times for seizures, etc.
I remember when she finally got her own home
and she was clean and sober for awhile.  SHe
was at her most healthiest and clearest time
that I can remember her.  She took pride
in being a warm hostess, sharing everything
she had.  She was kind in that way, with what
little she had, she always shared and had a sense
of family in that way.
We would talk for hours on the phone when
she had a phone of her own.
Sometimes she would go off on these religious
rants and ramblings that would drone on.
I would make a joke, catch her “off guard” and
she would laugh and start talking rationally.
Sometimes I could refocus her attentions.
She often had a free associative mind flow
of thoughts.  The story telling was amusing
a lot of the times, but I did hear the same
story a few times.  I would tell her she told
me that one…she would laugh.

“Yes Ok right” and start a new story.
Her magical child like behavior was endearing to
me.  As streetwise and savvy as she was there
was a innocent part of her.  She trusted people
who she never should have.  She called me
her “Uncle Frankie”, her brother Frankie
because I was protective of her and tried to
advocate on her behalf.

We always had each other’s backs.  We were
kindred spirits that way.
I am glad that she had a dignified passing, loved
and held by V.  What a gift!What a relief that she
wasn’t found in some door way in the city.
I always prayed for Joe’s safety and well being.

Like a cat with nine lives she lived through so
many brushes with death.
When her death finally came,  I was in shock
and still am.
I still see her walking down the block in a non-chalant kind of way, holding a juice bottle and newspaper in her hand.

She is healed in her mind and body and her
spirit is in peace.   That is the vision
I hold of my pal Joey.

You are gone but never forgotten. RIP.


your buddy, Frankie


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