Willie, I miss you dearly. I refer to you in chats and discussions I have with many, many people. I defer to you in my moments of indecision and fear. In your kitchen, while your Dearest, Jackie, would be working, we would read and talk about our basic text. Clearly, on a few occasions, I would sit at the kitchen table, spilling my guts in confession of my past, and you would laugh at me, and laugh at my past. Willie, you helped me laugh at myself, and I'll never forget it. You helped me be a man and become accountable and responsible for my life, then and now. Thanks.
A Man that was loved by so many.A Trusted Man amongst his Peers ,An unknown Man amongst enemies.He was a Teacher to me ,Was a caregiver to others,A big brother to many and a son to two And a loving Husband to one.I too being a Friend in his Life stood next to this Man of Word Wisdom Power and Mite.I would follow this Man to any battle or Wave of Shore For my Trust in him was an Unbroken link that will always endure. I have been Fortunate in my Life to of had such a Powerful Friend A King God Bliss Willie Geoffrey
Willie was a constant prescence in my house when I was growing up in Pleasant Hill. He painted houses with my stepfather and was good friends with both my parents. I remember him wearing shorts and flip flops all the time. I remember him pacing back and forth with a phone up to his ear, always so passionate and hyped up about everything he was thinking and/or talking about. My sister and I still laugh today about the time Willie was sitting in one of our dining room chairs and for some odd reason the whole chair suddenly crumbled beneath him and he landed on the floor with a loud, "Mother@$!&er!" We thought it was the funniest thing! He always made us laugh and I remember being excited when he'd come over. Later on in my teen years he'd talk about my love of writing and told me I was very smart and I could do whatever I wanted. Some things happened in my life and I wouldn't see Willie again until 2006 when I was 30 years old. He came into the dental lab I worked at for an appointment. We had a very pleasant exchange and he looked and acted exactly the same as I remembered. Good old Willie....so smart and witty! I was shocked and saddened to learn of his passing at such a young age.
Willie loved to laugh. And he loved words used intelligently for good purpose. Any good purpose. So this one's for you, Willie. The Washington Post's Mensa Invitational asks readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and then supply a new definition. Here are this year's winners. 1. Intaxication: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with. 2. Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly. 3. Bozone (n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future. 4. Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period. 5. Giraffiti: Vandalism spray-painted very, very high. 6. Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it. 7. Inoculatte: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late. 8. Hipatitis: Terminal coolness. 9. Osteopornosis: A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.) 10. Karmageddon: It's like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's, like, a serious bummer. 11. Decafalon (n.): The gruelling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you. 12. Glibido: All talk and no action. 13. Dopeler effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly. 14. Arachnoleptic fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web. 15. Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out. 16. Caterpallor (n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating. And The #1 Pick (Willie would especially love this one, which we dedicate to Dubya): 17. Ignoranus: A person who's both stupid and an asshole.
I remember Willie from the Treadway and Parkland days in the late 70's, early 80's. He would come over, hang out, sing, play and party with the crowd of us. He was a charming, boisterous, and passionate man. I did not know him well, but I remember the girls were crazy about him - he was such a cutie pie. And the guys loved his engaging personality. Later, I learned about the depth of his character as he was such a good friend to my dear friend, Liz. Sad to see the passing of one of us.
I love the story Ted shared about walking with Willie on the canal trail. I loved walking with Willie and trying to keep up with his vigorous stride while talking about politics, music, God, nature and friends who needed our help. I am looking into placing a memorial bench on that trail that meant so much to him. We all can continue to walk with Willie and rest on the bench. I will keep you posted and let you know how you can contribute.
I used to ride my bicycle on the bike trail in Pleasant Hill and I would run into Willie power walking. He would be talking to somebody on his cell phone, in a really loud voice, and when he saw me, he would light up, and get all excited like a puppy dog seeing his master, and he would say into the cell phone something like, "A VERY IMPORTANT PERSON SHOWED UP. I HAVE TO GO NOW." And for the next hour I would be the most important person in the world to Willie. He told of how he wanted to be a cowboy so he went to South America and rustled cattle. He would talk with his hands and legs, about things like the Big Bang, and how YOU ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT PERSON in the Big Bang. He used to go to the Salvation Army and talk to the homeless men and let them know they were THE MOST IMPORTANT PERSON IN THE WORLD to Willie. And they would get sober, and he would take them through the 12 steps, and he gave them jobs painting houses, and they would get off the streets, and get jobs, and homes, and families and help others. Willie was like Mother Theresa on Rockstar. And Willie would tell everybody he met in the program that they had to go to the Salvation Army with him and help others, and dozens of people would go with him and, I don't know the exact numbers, but probably hundreds of men got sober and saved their lives from alcoholism, thanks to Willie and his friends. When you were with Willie you we the most important person in the world. And when he walked into the room the whole room just lit up. Being with Willie was like standing in the brilliant sunlight on a beautiful day.
Willie never bought into the nonsense that 99% of the world buys into - that you have to be afraid, and work at a job you hate for 30 years. He used to tell me if there is something you want to do in this life, you better hurry up and do it...
I knew I had Willie's stamp of approval when he told me, "Liz, you're the beef." When you're one of eight kids and your family doesn't have enough money to serve meat very often, beef is as good as it gets. So if Willie ever told you that you were the beef, you were deeply appreciated. :)
Bloopers from George W. Bush's presidential speeches and public appearances.