I am here to talk to you about Merry Andrew, AKA Lustig Andrei.
As dlowan has reported
, he has died.
A bit of Hawaii for Andy.
I knew Andy for, I believe, a good decade and a half. He was from Abuzz.
This is what I know, and what I remember, and what I can conjecture. So forgive me if it isn't 100% accurate. Feel free to add your own memories and photos and comments. Like all A2K obituaries, this is a wake. This is a space for all of us.
But it has been my privilege and my duty and my responsibility to be the keeper of all of this. It's a part, I feel, of why I am here.
Andy was, I know, in his seventies. He could speak Latvian fluently. Apparently few people can in the U.S., so he ended up being certified to act as a Latvian interpreter in court. He would go around the country, interpreting.
He also taught at-risk youth. I don't know which subject, but it had to have been in the humanities. It might have been English literature, but don't quote me on that.
For those who never met him in person, he was as gracious, funny, erudite, and gentlemanly as he was online.
What you saw was what you got with Andy. He reminded me a great, great deal of my mother's brother. RP remembers him. And so I would type with, or speak with, Andy, and in a way it was a lot like talking to my Uncle Adolph again, too.
I recall going to Andy's apartment in downtown Boston. Now, you gotta understand, this was a postage-stamp-sized place! It was one common room with a tiny kitcheny area, plus a bathroom, and a miniscule bedroom. The common front area was certainly less than 10 ft x 10 ft. Tiny.
But it had high, high, high ceilings. Andy invited me in because he was about to finally leave Boston and move to Hawaii to be with his wife, Faith (AKA Seaglass AKA Sglass). Andy needed to ditch a ton of stuff. And those high ceilings? It was up to the rafters with books. So he kept asking me, what did I want. Eek! He was a gentleman, of course, and so he plied me with lemonade until I assented to taking his old coffee table.
This is it. It needs to be dusted.
It's done up to look like an old-fashioned cobbler's bench. I can look at it and think of him, and a little of my uncle, too. I bet they would have been pals. Perhaps they can be, now.
Andrew Mikelsons was the epitome of kind, intelligent, and reasoned discussion and debate. He could disagree without being disagreeable. And you often walked away from an encounter with him having learned something. May we all be like that.
And if you'll excuse me, it must be the coffee table dust, for my eyes are clouding.
Have at it, A2K, and let us pause and remember one of our own.