It is done. His body stopped functioning at 6:15 pm on Chicago time, this 20th of June 2010. His mind, his heart, his soul and his voice left a day earlier.
I choose to write now. While the shock keeps me lucid. Before the realization that he has passed begins sinking in and I am once again crushed and momentarily paralyzed and too hurt to touch his memory.
Randolph Maguigad. Randy. Randizo. His number is still in my phone. I have an email from him in my inbox that according to google, is about three days old. I drove through his house a couple of minutes ago.
“I’ve been listening to so much good music lately”, he told us happily the last time Bagwis got together. He put in a request for “My boy builds coffins” for Demetrio’s radio station a couple of days ago. It might seem eerie, but it makes perfect sense. He didn’t request “My boy builds coffins” because it talked about coffins. He requested it because it’s an amazing song. And Randy always had amazing taste.
* * *
At first it seemed so meaningless. Us standing there, crying. Him lying there on the bed breathing through tubes.
And yet it wasn’t. It wasn’t meaningless. Because only a meaningful life can end in a meaningful death. Randy’s life HAD meaning. It was overflowing with joy and love and music and beats and peace and revolution. He lived the dream. He walked it, he put it in a jar, he recorded it and sampled the fuck out of it. He wrote it, he broke it, he fed it, he stomped and breathed it. And nothing can be more meaningful than that.
And yet the sun shines on, the movement continues to gather strength, and the rhythm refuses to fade. Randizo had made his stand and he did it well. And those of us still living will continue on, our hearts bleeding just a bit more.
We never did get to buy you that first taste of legally-bought alcohol. But we’ll make sure to bring a case when it’s our turn to come over.
Much love, much peace, brotherman. And yes, we will be eternally down to go see Mos Def with you.
(I can still see spots in my eyes, like I’ve been staring at the sun too long.)