Fear of Blogging Goes to Comicon

…And lives to tell the tale. While in San Diego, I visited an old friend. Paul Williams, who published the very first serious rock magazine (as opposed to the silly teen fan mags like Tiger Beat), Crawdaddy!, had a bad bike accident several years back, and suffered some serious brain damage. While at first he made a spectacular recovery, and it looked as though he’d be alright, he had a relapse, and is now in a special care home in Encinitas, a short ride from San Diego on the Coaster, a train that goes along (you guessed it!) the coast. Paul and I go way back to 1967, but I had not seen him since the 80s. I was met at the Encinitas station by Paul’s beautiful and talented wife, singer Cindy Lee Berryhill, and their adorable bright son, Alexander, who is the spitting image of Paul.

Immediately, kozmik serendipity happened: that day, I had received an email from cartoonist Mary Fleener, who is the best cubist artist in the world except for a bunch of dead guys. Mary lives in Encinitas, and I had hoped to see her at Comicon, but alas! she had come for one day only, and I’d missed her. But while we were still in the station parking lot, a car pulled up, a horn sounded — and voila! It was Mary, purely by accident (or telepathically guided there by the Goddess)! So I got in a quick hug and a promise that we’d get together in April, when Mary will come to Wondercon in San Francisco — and a photo of me with Mary and Cindy, and there it is.

I was glad and sad to see Paul, (and there we are) my first introduction to what brain damage can do to a person. Your brain, I realized, controls all of you, not just your mind, and so Paul’s damaged brain has affected him physically, and that made me sad. But underneath, he’s still Paul, and that made me glad. Paul has a mannerism: he’ll point a finger at you and grin, a kind of “aha!” thing. It’s something he’s always done, and he did it when he saw me this time.

Same Paul!

You can read all about Paul on Cindy’s blog: lhttp://cindyleeberryhill.blogspot.com/.

Cindy has a great new CD out, featuring a song she wrote about Paul, “Beloved Stranger.”

And BTW, the cover is drawn by none other than Mary Fleener.

 

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