April 16, 2013

Thinking of Maddy

A bit of a melancholy day in the US of A today after Boston. I, for some unknown reason, have thought of Maddy and what she would say and what she would counsel. I miss her. I miss her wisdom.

Posted by maddyfriends at 07:54 PM | Comments (0)

November 07, 2012

A true friend

I've been thinking of Madeleine a lot lately - I don't know why. Perhaps because I've been thinking of leaving the therapy group I'm in, and it was Madeleine who first suggested I join it. (At least, she suggested I look into therapy, and the group is what came out of that.)

I had two titles in mind for this, the other one being 'Delicacy'. And let it be said right now that in many ways Madeleine had bugger-all delicacy. Sometimes she repudiated delicacy, deliberately evoking awkward, messy, smelly bodily realities. There was nothing delicate (sadly) about her rather rudimentary sense of humour: I remember those awful teases she went in for, which put me in mind of trying to play with a baby elephant. Then there was her extravagantly over-developed ability to take what seemed to be quite genuine, acutely-felt offence, which she expressed with all the delicacy of a powerful beast in pain. But I guess in those moments she was - in pain, that is.

So in a lot of ways - a lot of very memorable and only slightly endearing ways - she was anything but delicate. But if I set that aside, and think of what happened - what kept on happening - when she tuned in to what I said to her... She was an extraordinarily sensitive listener, even in print - she was like a medium, picking up the voices of the living. When it came to picking apart what I said to her - and what I didn't say; when it came to distinguishing what I really wanted from what I thought I wanted, what I believed in from what I was afraid not to believe in - then, she had the delicacy of a watchmaker. Over and again, she helped me not to be afraid, and without ever doing anything as crass as telling me I didn't need to be afraid. Over and again, she spotted the moments when I was saying No out of fear, or when I was insisting on saying Yes because I was afraid of what might happen if I said no, and she said... is that right? are you sure? you seem very definite, but I was just wondering, are you sure that's what you want? A gentle drip, drip, drip of careful, attentive scepticism - so powerful, so hard to resist. Not even the rain has such small hands.

We hadn't been very close for a while when she died; our last few exchanges had been on the wounded-animal level, or playful-elephant at best. But when we were close, she did something extraordinary, that I think only a true friend can do: she reflected me back to myself with my thoughts and hopes and dreams intact, but without any of the fear. I'll never forget that, and I'll always be grateful. We only met once - and I never spent any time alone with her - but she was a true friend.


Posted by maddyfriends at 05:51 PM | Comments (0)

April 24, 2012


Maddy dissapeared 3 weeks after her 58th birthday. Today, I have lived longer than she has.

It is a very sad personnal milestone. I still think of her with lots of love and sadness.

Posted by maddyfriends at 03:00 AM | Comments (0)

July 24, 2011

Thinking of you

Don't know why you are so in my thoughts today. It is a warm summer day and I wish to visit Cape May NJ and this is the trip we never got to make. I do still miss you and sincerly hope you are having a lovely life somewhere! - Christine

Posted by maddyfriends at 06:40 PM | Comments (0)

March 13, 2009


Damn. Still hurts from time to time.

R "internym goes here" D

Posted by maddyfriends at 02:45 AM | Comments (0)

December 15, 2007

Four Years Now

It doesn't get any fucking fairer, does it?


Posted by maddyfriends at 05:14 PM | Comments (0)

November 22, 2007

'membering maddie

Madeleine Page was one of the wittiest and insightful gals I've ever met. And she did NOT, as the expression goes, suffer fools gladly. There was an alt.coffee thread some years ago where I got into a little tussle with another person. I was rather rude, and then I felt a little guilty about the incident.

Sure enough, a day later, I received an email from Maddie saying that the other guy had DESERVED the tongue lashing, and if anything, I had gone TOO EASY on him.

So oh yes, we all loved Maddie, just as we admired and envied her unique perspective on things.

Nowadays alt.coffee tends to be full of spam and many "serious" coffee aficionados have moved onto forums like home-barista and coffeegeek. But those people who are quick to both praise Madeleine and disparage alt.coffee might reflect on how she might assess the situation. The moderator-enforced, sickly-sweet politeness on the web forums has its value, but I believe it is something for which she would have no patience.

In the right circumstance, we honor her memory by telling a fool (s)he's a fool. Plainly and directly.

[cross-posted to home-barista.com]

Posted by maddyfriends at 11:10 AM | Comments (0)

December 19, 2006

To Remember

It has been three years, kei te heke tonu nga roimata, e hoa ma, tears are still falling.

Posted by maddyfriends at 08:26 AM | Comments (0)

December 29, 2005

As I remember her

Who was Madeleine Page? The question was posed on alt.folklore.urban, by one who knew not better, in the New Year of 1998.

But Ha! "Madeleine" emailed me privately too just for responding to you, Brian. I asked her who appointed her Net Nanny. She claimed someone called Ian York appointed her that. She said he owns Usenet.

Who is Ian York and who is Madeleine?

Kevin T. Keith essayed an answer.

Dr. I.A. Nyork is the evil genius behind most of Usenet. He is a meme-warfare expert who uses AFU as his testing ground for infectious agents recovered from the brain tissue of AOLusers fed British beef and Goon Show extracts. He cultivates a mild-mannered exterior which allows him to blend seamlessly into the wallpaper at cocktail parties, but underneath he is a Very Respectable Man and a trained killer who can set a microwave oven on fire with nothing but a jar of glass disks soaked in flammable solvents. Soon he will find a use for this skill and we will be as putty in his hands. He is slowly squeezing Usenet into the homogenous, uni-voiced, organized force of disciplined and well-informed information elite that we see today; when the final touches are complete we will do his bidding only, and he will rule. He writes book reviews when no-one is looking, and he left his copy of "The New Yorker" in my bedroom.

Madeleine is Dr. Nyork's sexy sidekick and bodyguard. Where he bears an uncanny resemblance to Patrick MacNee - in the sense that they're both not from America - she is the Emma Peel of this dynamic, but elegantly restrained in a UK-and-colonies-sort-of-way, duo. She dresses consistently in black, brown, white, and sometimes tan, and often wears little hats, according to intelligence analyst Emily Kelly, who left some banana bread with nuts in it in my kitchen. Madeleine serves as enforcer of Dr. Nyork's twisted regimen, much like that little weird thing that sat on Marlon Brando's shoulder in "The Island of Dr. Moreau" except she's taller and looks more like the young Brando in "On the Waterfront"; when you misbehave, Nanny gives you a spanking. It's for your own good. Few ask for another, and we don't let those few near the children. She is impervious to cold, alcohol, and counterarguments; she speaks with the good Doctor's voice, when he's not using it, and her word is Law.

This is all very well and good, but overlooks Madeleine's many other talents. She was a formidable advice columnist, as Maggie Newman testified, quoting her sage words

You know, Maggie, if you're really serious about getting laid you might want to reconsider using "I'm a grandma!" as your opening line.

an acute social commentator,

North Americans have taken the good name of "Morris" - a sturdy fellow, slightly stocky, with a mild tendency to adenoidal breathing and slightly below average IQ points - and transformed it into "MawREESE", a name fit only for a dancing master with tiny feet, improbable eyebrows, little patent leather pumps, slicked down marcelled hair and breath that smells of menthol cigarettes and violet cachews.

and a truly gifted translator of French verse.

Les amoureux fervents et les savants austères
Aiment également, dans leur mûre saison,

Bean-lovers and Austrian servants
Take equal aim at their salted walls.

Les chats puissants et doux, orgueil de la maison,
Qui comme eux sont frileux et comme eux sédentaires.

The cats are not housetrained and doves are screwing indoors
They're a frivolous lot and they all ought to visit the dentist

Amis de la science et de la volupté,
Ile cherchent le silence et l'horreur des ténèbres;
L'érèbe les eût pris pour ses coursiers funèbres,
S'ils pouvaient au servage incliner leur fierté.

I'm a fat scientist
And I'll worship silence and horror until ten o'clock.
A joint would loosen my corsets and be sort of fun
If the servants would only look the other way at teatime.

Ils prennent en songeant les nobles attitudes
Des grands sphinx allongés au fond des solitudes,
Qui semblent s'endormir dans un rêve sans fin;

But they preen and sing as if they were aristocracy
And when they're on their own, they flex their bottom sphincters
Should I go to sleep or out to a really rough rave?

Leurs reins féconds sont pleins d'étincelles magiques,
Et des parcelles d'or, ainsi qu'un sable fin,
étoilent vaguement leurs prunelles mystiques.

It's raining cats and litters of kittens, like ugly Christmas decorations
I wanted a pocket door and a nice fur coat
But all I got was a wavy veil and some New Age prunes.

Ergo, we miss her.

Posted by maddyfriends at 12:58 AM

December 16, 2005

miss you

Maddy, been thinking a lot about you these days. Sometimes I feel like I'm following in your footsteps. I feel your guidance. I miss you, lady.

Posted by maddyfriends at 11:37 PM

2 years on

it's been two years, now. we have a constant reminder of mpage in our own little maddie, who is now almost 2 years 3 months. i can't help but think that maddy the elder would be pleased with maddie the younger, for they could share in their joy of pink, and of words, and yes, even espresso and coffee.

mty watching a lavalamp: "purple going uuuuuuPPP!" purple going DDoowwwnnn!"

we do miss mpage,

--barry "'maddie watch daddy make spresso!"

Posted by maddyfriends at 06:09 PM

November 21, 2005


Madeleine would have turned sixty today.

Happy Birthday, Lovey.

Phil G.

Posted by maddyfriends at 12:24 PM

November 24, 2004

For Maddy and Emily

For Maddy and Emily.

This kind of news is like a standing wave in the social continuum. No matter how long you choose to live with the receiver shut off, one day you brush by the switch and there it is. It was cousin Maggie who broke through the wall. further proof if ever it were needed that the three most terrifying developments of human history are religion, thermonuclear weapons and Google.

It's still a bit raw at the moment. I was never really any good at sorting out my feelings, and I can tell you they're about as organised as a grand mal seizure right now. The two things I've been musing on since talking to Maggie, though, have been Emily-the-Quadruped and That Bloody Tree.

ETQ: Why do petite women who live in tiny apartments keep woolly mammoths as pets? My sister is the same. At least Maddy wasn't into 2-meter pythons at the same time.
But Emily was the best walking-tour guide Philadelphia had to offer. She knew some sixteen different routes to the doggy park, each incorporating more sites of historical significance than you could shake a stick at if you ever got it out of her mouth. So whenever she'd been at the cat food or I'd been running my mouth with the brain out of gear and Maddy was using That Tone Of Voice the two of us would make ourselves scarce and head off out into the bracing sleet in search of some new feature in the cradle of democracy to wonder at or pee on according to our inclinations. I have their photograph in front of me, nose-to-nose on the rug. If you could bottle the looks in their eyes you could buy Brunei as a weekend getaway. Together forever. I'll try to think of that as a consolation.

TBT: A blue spruce, if I remember correctly, about the size of the Eiffel Tower. No kidding, this thing had its own ZIP code and micro-climate. We bought it off a couple of very dodgy-looking characters outside the bodega up the road who gave every impression of having just returned from a nocturnal expedition to a National Forest. Getting it in through the front door was like assaulting the gates of Helm's Deep with a battering ram. As for erecting it in the window bay my comments regarding the raising of the flag on Iwo Jima were not received with anything like the appreciation I had been expecting. This was in the days just after The Flood, where Maddy had lost just about everything she owned apart from the Christmas ornaments. A mere couple of truckloads. You could have decorated Mont Blanc with the stuff, and in a damned sight more safety. Getting the star up would have brought an appreciative murmur from Ed Hillary. But it looked great in the end, three dog-walks (see above) later, and in a very real sense represented the high point of our relationship. I shall never experience anything quite like that again.

One journey has ended. My heart tells me that another has begun. Haere ki te aranui, Madeline. Aroha. Arohanui.

Neil Newman

Posted by maddyfriends at 06:36 PM

November 22, 2004

Happy Birthday Darlin'

Your first birthday Maddy without a wild search for a rude card, a fitting present connected with food, or other major life pleasures. I just want you to know how much I miss having someone to laugh with so hard my stomach hurts. Much love, J.

Posted by maddyfriends at 07:27 PM

May 05, 2004


Bad news travels slowly. Madeleine and I were close friends, but only for a short time, and after we'd explored our friendship fully, we lost touch. Through sheer happenstance news came to me today. Reading her blog and the comments of those who were around her filled me with deep sadness, but also with joy. During the time we were close, she seemed so solitary, and solitude was something we shared. She had a way with friends that made each feel singular and uniquely important. But I wondered if her solitude was lonely, and I see that it was not. It is clear to me that she had a strong and vital network of dear friends even when she seemed to me to be one against the world.

Someone said Madeleine was not interested in things, but rather in the things her friends were passionate about. She was drawn into the world of running a few years ago by her own running, and I was introduced to her by reading her writings on rec.running.

The resulting friendship extended far beyond running and cycling, however, even though we both shared that interest. Our correspondence and conversation covered every topic important to both of us at the time, and I can only hope it helped her even a tiny fraction of how much it helped me.

Someone else described her writing as a conflict she had with language. I didn't see it that way. Rather, I thought her alternate spellings had the purpose of assigning a personal value to words. "Brane" is a wonderful example. She wasn't talking about any brain, but her brain. It was definitely not dyslexia--her command of language and symbology was absolute--but rather the position of someone who knew the rules so well she was free to break them. No, her dyslexia was entirely mechanical and physical, and our friendship rested in part on the advice I could give her about her bicycles.

So far, nobody has mentioned her love for poetry. She shared several with me, and demanded that I take them seriously. Here's my favorite:

Mother, Summer, I
by Philip Larkin

My mother, who hates thunderstorms,
Holds up each summer day and shakes
It out suspiciously, lest swarms
Of grape-dark clouds are lurking there;
But when the August weather breaks
And rains begin, and brittle frost
Sharpens the bird-abandoned air,
Her worried summer look is lost.

And I her son, though summer-born
And summer-loving, none the less
Am easier when the leaves are gone;
Too often summer days appear
Emblems of perfect happiness
I can't confront: I must await
A time less bold, less rich, less clear:
An autumn more appropriate.

She looked on it as a tragedy, of the son bound by his mother's fears. I know it had deep personal meaning for her even if it was just one of many poems she loved.

Madeleine Page, rest in peace, my friend.

Rick Denney

Posted by maddyfriends at 11:58 PM

March 23, 2004

Madeleine's Books

Quite a few of Madeleine's books have yet to find homes. I've taken those that remain for safekeeping, and photographed them so that her friends and colleagues can sift through them for any that might be of interest. The photographs are online at http://xcski.com/gallery/MPBooks, and anyone who'd like to have one or more of the books may contact me at angus@fecko.com.

--Angus Johnston

Posted by maddyfriends at 08:32 PM

February 16, 2004

August 14 interment

Dear Friends,

As we prepare for the final stage in our farewell to Maddy and Emily,
burying their ashes in rural Quebec, we would like once again to
extend a welcome and open invitation for you to join us. At this
point, we can just give you some basic information, but as things
fall into place, we will send out more information to those of you
who will be coming. Please rsvp to Elizabeth Garner
(eliz@eskimo.com), who has once again generously agreed to be
our contact point, and we will keep you in the loop.

August is a beautiful time to visit this part of Canada, so please join

Date: Saturday, Aug. 14 - 2:00, followed by some quiet meditation
time, followed by a barbecue supper of Maddy's favorite - lamb.

Where: Rural Quebec, approximately a 2 hour drive from the Ottawa
(Ontario) International Airport (YOW).

Facilities: Lots of room to camp for the weekend, possibility of
renting camping equipment in Ottawa if you are flying in, possibility
of booking a room with a private bathroom in a small resort on a
beautiful private lake "next door" (two kilometres away), possibility
of renting rooms in hotels/motels in Ottawa or nearby towns.

We would love to see you, and share this final stage of Maddy's
journey together.

Love, Jean and Luce

Posted by maddyfriends at 11:19 PM

January 25, 2004

Two or three things I remember about Madeleine

I remember falling out with her. Some really dreadful fallings-out, dating back to before I even felt we were close. (Perhaps that was part of getting close.) But it was always there, the threat of a big row - that or the Big Silence (which was worse, of course). The last time she wrote to me before she got ill, it was to tweak me about not being as much of a coffee buff as she was (or to encourage me to follow her down that road, perhaps). Either way, it irritated the hell out of me, but I let it drop without replying. Didn't want to go through /all that/ again. Wish I had.

I remember her weird, demonstratively clumpy wordplay - 'brane', 'aminal' - and I remember her quite casually describing herself as dyslexic. She didn't go in for passive-aggressive poor-me-isms - if she said 'poor me', you knew about it - so I can only assume that she meant what she said. That someone who was so *fluent*, in so many senses - someone steeped in Joyce, for one thing - should have had that kind of difficult relationship with language... I won't say I can't believe it (in the recipe I posted earlier tonight, there's a reference to 'lettus') but it does make me respect her, even more than before.

I remember helping her with her dissertation. That was an extraordinary experience - I found myself thinking (and feeling) quite intensely about something I'd neither known nor cared about before. Her enthusiasm - her passion - for the subject enabled me to engage with it too. I think she herself worked like that a lot of the time - she once told me she wasn't terribly interested in /things/, but she was interested in people and got passionate about the things that they were passionate about. It must have been a tremendously rich way to live, but a lonely one sometimes.

I remember, finally, that she often felt unloved - I think that feeling was always there for her, lurking under the bed ready to reach out and trip her up. In particular, she seemed to be convinced she was physically unattractive; I got the impression that her mother had told her so, repeatedly and from an early age. I hope that we managed to shake these feelings - to persuade her that some of the love she gave was returned, and that the person who gave it was very, very valuable. (And attractive with it.)
- PhilE

Posted by maddyfriends at 06:26 PM

January 13, 2004

Memorial Service

Just a note to say that I'm busy sorting through the pictures I took this weekend, and I will be posting them to my picture server as quickly as I can. Luce also sent me the text of the readings and "portraits" from the memorial, and I'll put them up as I get to them.

Anybody who wants to post a summary of the weekend, especially the memorial, is welcome.

Posted by ptomblin at 10:17 PM

January 12, 2004

Dear Maddy

Dear Maddy:

I just wanted to let you know you missed a hell of a party this last weekend. Many of the Usual Suspects were there, from near and far, as well as some promising new hopefuls, including one all the way from Athens. We had great food, great coffee {I'm told...} and great conversation.

We tromped virtual mud all over your rugs; and best of all, shamelessly talked about you endlessly.

But I have to say that for me, the best part was discovering your unAFU friends find you as much of mystery as we do! The look on the otherwise serious, professional, face of your cow orker [I think it was Linda Hopkins...] when she said exclaimed "Maddy on the front of the New York Times talking about ?!COFFEE??...." was priceless.

Thanks for throwing such a great gathering...


Posted by maddyfriends at 09:11 AM

December 19, 2003

An announcement in rec.running

Somebody reposted Phil's afu announcement to rec.running. She was still remembered fondly there even though she hadn't participated in a while.

Posted by ptomblin at 04:21 PM

Another alt.coffee Maddy thread

Randy G announces his tribute page.

Posted by ptomblin at 04:18 PM

alt.coffee announcement thread

The announcement thread on alt.coffee.

Posted by ptomblin at 04:13 PM

AFU thread

Here is the alt.folklore.urban thread where Phil posted the news of her death.

Posted by ptomblin at 02:53 PM

days past


Some photos of AFU Rochester, with Maddy helping to build the feared Zima Colander.

Your choice of formats -- beware the file sizes


Posted by maddyfriends at 10:04 AM

I Remember Maddy

The last time I saw Madeleine in the flesh was August of 2002. She came to Chicago to attend an espresso tasting event and spent the weekend in my south side apartment. We took many walks, and she took many naps. (Which is strange when you think about all that espresso.) The things I remember: How she made pleasurable whooshing sounds when taking a shower. How she could not pass a dog (she always had doggy treats in her pocket, even when traveling without Emily, and would invariably engage in long conversations with every dog-owner she encountered on our walks). How she enjoyed every morsal of food we ate -- especially including a memorable lakeside lunch with Christine and Mike. How misguided she was about Freudian analysis (of course we argued!). How very much she relished and savored every detail of her friends' lives. She was genuinely interested in other people, and her interest did not preclude indulging in wickedly accurate analyses in which I participated enthusiastically. We were a pair of old gossips, in short. In my mind she is still snoring gently on my couch.


Posted by maddyfriends at 08:42 AM

December 18, 2003

alt.coffee memorial page

Randy over in alt.coffee posted a memorial page to Maddy here. Have a look, if you haven't been reading alt.coffee.

Posted by maddyfriends at 09:53 PM

December 17, 2003

Gandalf the White

''End? No, the journey doesn't end here,'' replies the wizard, who already has had one near-death experience and has been reborn. ''There's another path, one that we all must take. The gray rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and it will change to silver glass, and then you see it.''

Confused, Pippin asks: ''See what?'' With a wry smile, Gandalf replies: ''White shores and beyond them, a far green country under a swift sunrise.''

A far green country to you, Maddy, and to you, Emily.

Posted by ptomblin at 06:02 PM

Emily the Noble Hound

Maddy's beloved dog, Emily, went to join Maddy last night.

Emily was as sweet a dog as Maddy was a person. Whenever a visitor -- friend, stranger, or probably burglar -- came to the door, Emily would owf happily, bound around, and fetch a leash and a shoe. The visitor was obviously there to take her for a walk, you see, and Emily had to make sure he was properly equipped.

I'm very happy that Emily survived her owner.

Phil Gustafson

Posted by maddyfriends at 03:25 PM

A woman of brilliance and wit

As you are drawn into the world of Maddy, you are surrounded by a sort of wonderfulness...a feeling of being... a feeling of elegance. Even during the toughest of her times in Hospital, she maintained her humor, her wit and her diginity (all of which a hospital tries to take from you). I cherish her wisdom, I honor her doing that what she wants to do when SHE wanted to do it, and most of all I hold sacred her desire to help others- a truly wonderful lady.
Her vibrance and joy of living each day to the fullest is inspirational. Her wit and wisdom are a rare find- and my hopes were truly to collaborate with her somday on a novel! Ah, but her grace and elegance are that of a fine fine wine- rare, wonderful, and truly appreciated in this fast paced world.

I will miss you on rainy days when i think of the talks we had about them, I will miss you everytime my cats come to curl up around me, and I will miss you everytime I go to my favorite places in Canada. Rest well my friend, know that your soul guides me in my life both personally and professionally, and say hello to those who already have left this earth that were so dear to me.
Godspeed! Im listening for a bell to ring on my Christmas Tree :-)

Posted by maddyfriends at 12:52 PM

A note from Madeleine, 2/22/98

X-Sender: mpage@popserver.panix.com
Date: Sun, 22 Feb 1998 22:21:40 -0500
To: gontang@electriciti.com (Austin Gontang)
From: mpage@panix.com (Madeleine Page)
Subject: Re: alt.folklore.urban

>Give me a thumbnail sketch of alt.folklore.urban. Thanks. I respond to
>your reply later.

Hmmm. I've been active on the group for four years at least, so it's like
describing an old friend -- not the easiest task.

The group deals with the sorts of myths and rumours that are so prevalent
these days of mass communications: everything from "send a get well card to
X who is dying of cancer", to horror stories about gangs shooting at people
from under their cars. Tales of travellers who woke to find their kidney(s)
had been stolen.

*How* the group deals with this stuff is what is fun. It's an eclectic
bunch, with regulars who are nuclear physicists, test pilots, published
poets, English lit critics, computer experts, lawyers, geologists,
entomologists, dictionary writers, biologists, sky jumpers, philosophers,
mathematicians, MDs... You name it, there's someone on afu who knows about
the topic.

But above and beyond the range of expertise you find on afu, the group is
remarkable for the standard of writing it expects, the degree of informed
scepticism it insists on, and the level of wit it displays. Lovely stuff.
The group is not kind to those who wander in and don't measure up (it is
hard to maintain standards in a world that has no boundaries, like Usenet),
but is warmly welcoming to Those Who Have A Clue. And I'm yet to find a
newsgroup with writing that measures up to the norm on afu.

Lovely place to hang out: like a very civilised, eclectic Senior Common
Room. I've met many, many people from the group, here, out west, in Canada,
and in England. A number of other afu regulars have become close friends of

>Ph.D. is in psychology. A master's in Theology. Finished the course work
>at Catholic University for another master's degree in Religious Education.
>A master's in Rehabilitation Counseling. And trained by the Joy of Running
>author, psychiatrist Thad Kostrubala as his first "Running Therapist."

First degree in Philosophy; second in Counselling and Consulting
Psychology; trained in Gestalt Psychology and in Organization Development;
now doing a PsyD. Coming from a psychoanalytic perspective, largely.

>It's an interesting path upon which I travel. Nice having you along for a
>few miles.

Pleasure is mutual.

>Gontang: Filipino father, naturalized US citizen. Polish mother, second
>generation raised in Chicago...and fell in love on the tennis courts with
>this tall, dark and handsome young man. In the 30's laws against mixed
>marriage and on top, she was not supported by any of her brothers or father
>in her decision.

She must have been a woman of real strength of character to make the
choices she did at the time she made them. Do you have a sense of your
Filipino heritage? Speak Tagalog at all?

>So you are talking to a Filipino-Pollack. Reason for some of the hard
>headedness and a quirky way of dealing with things...and if not dealing
>with them directly...then you have a full blown passive aggressive.

This makes me grin. Sounds familiar!

As I think I mentioned, I grew up in Britain, left there at 26, went to
Canada. Came here and did my Masters in Boston. Spent a year in the West
Indies working. Moved here 18 months ago to return to school. Looking
forward to being back in Canada when my (five year) program is over: it's
gentler than here, and I miss it.

Good talking to you, Ozzie. And I'm interested in the book, by the way.


Posted by maddyfriends at 03:19 AM

December 16, 2003

I've been thinking about Maddy all day

Like many folks here, my first contact with Madeleine was on-line, on alt.folklore.urban. I've changed email accounts enough times (and my archiving is haphazard enough) that I can't find the earliest email that we exchanged. But there was plenty of enjoyable correspondence, some serious and some silly. (I find that I'm not alone in having enjoyed such correspondence with her.) Madeleine wasn't the first of my on-line friends that I had the pleasure of meeting in person, but she was the first one I made a point of planning a meeting with when I was out of town. We had a delightful lunch in a Rittenhouse Square cafe, on a rainy Philadelphia day, and I was disappointed to have to run to catch a train.

Some of my most treasured email from her concerns my house; she was delighted at how delighted I was to have a place to fix up the way I want it. I'm only sorry that she never got to see it.

Good-bye, my friend, and God speed.

Posted by maddyfriends at 07:52 PM

Lady with a Dog

It was Maddy who first taught my dog how to Sit For A Milk-Bone™, on one of her visits to New York. (He eventually graduated to Roll Over, but never really got beyond that, which of course was not the fault of Maddy's pedagogical philosophy.)

I think it was the very first weekend that I met Maddy when I saw her unexpectedly produce a biscuit out of her purse for the enjoyment of a signpost-tethered Rhodesian ridgeback. (Or so she ID'd the breed.)

She was a good mom to Emily the Q, for sure.

Posted by maddyfriends at 04:01 PM

Maddy as I remember her

Laughing, a little bit annoyed at me, and at ease.

Posted by ptomblin at 01:26 PM


The first day after a death, the new absence
Is always the same; we should be careful

Of each other, we should be kind
While there is still time.

"The Mower," Philip Larkin

Thank you and rest well, our lovely girl.


Posted by maddyfriends at 11:48 AM

Random Memories

Maddy and I had a sleepover at her house in Ottawa one weekend. I went with Paul to visit his kids, but I abandoned him on Friday night. Maddy and I sat up and ate and drank and laughed... I don't remember what we talked about, but I do remember that I've never slept as well as I did that night on her futon.

I loved her Ottawa house; I still mentally wave to her when we pass it.

I also vividly remember a quite hilarious discussion we had over sexual practices and preferences. Sadly for all of you, it will remain my memory alone.

She was quite a woman.

Posted by maddyfriends at 11:17 AM

Best. Hat. Ever.

Posted by maddyfriends at 07:45 AM

December 15, 2003

Goodbye, Maddy

Maddy, I love you.

I hope my ending is as peaceful and surrounded by friends as yours.

Posted by ptomblin at 04:14 PM