The Spirit of Phil


HeyPhil -

I found the place where your car broke down some 20 years ago on our trip to Oregon during our beatnik phase and you said ‘let’s hitchhike’ and I said ‘who’s going to pick us up we look like serial killers’ and we didn’t get picked up, but hiked down the Columbia Gorge all night until we got to a park and slept shivering together in the bathroom and using the hand driers to heat ourselves and had to get up the next morning and hike to the next town to call AAA. But the thing that has stayed with me and I have mythologized in my mind is the moment when after hours of hitchhiking with no luck you shouted out to the heavens ‘what I wouldn’t give for One.Cold.Beer!!’ And I said ‘man come on, you’re nuts’ but not one mile later, you ran to a guardrail, hopped over it, and began flinging empty littered cans left and right as I hollered ‘dude! Phil! Come on man!’ but no sooner had I said this when you lifted your hand triumphantly to the sky and cried out ‘YES! Yes! Thank you!!’ And you had A COLD BEER IN YOUR HAND I swear to god and I don’t need to swear to you because you were there and you saw this simple miracle and it wasn’t even a 12oz can it was a 16. And you offered to share your miracle with me but I was pissed because I didn’t believe in miracles of this nature so I declined what a doubting Thomas I was. It was here that I began to learn that God is not a god of vengeance but of love and grace and simple pleasures and what we’ve come to call ‘the spirit of Phil’ - riding the wave and not worrying over tomorrow for tomorrow can worry itself. Let’s meet here someday with a six pack and some smokes. ❤️
(Also, how have I not realized the significance of its name???)