It started with a phone call in April. George had an idea. His twenty year diabetes diagnosis anniversary was approaching, and he found a JDRF Walk For A Cure nearby on the same date. He wanted to throw a big party and have a huge team for the walk. I thought it was a great idea, and told him I would find a way to get there.
Fast forward six months, and I find myself at the airport in California waiting for George and his mom to pick me up. I was excited to meet George’s mom, and she was fabulous. She is stubborn and MADE me sit in the front seat of the car on the way home. She is funny, and it’s easy to see where George’s humor comes from.
It’s Friday night. The night before the walk and the party. George is anxious and worrying about everything. He had a plan for everything that needed to be done, and the support of his sisters, their families, his wife and kids, his mom, and his brother from Minneapolis (me!).
We shopped, I people watched, we drove stuff around, and Sandy (George’s mom) sliced a million dinner rolls in record time. Watching everyone work together was like watching an orchestra perform. We all pulled together and got everything done. And of course, hanging out with George has no shortage of funny moments.
With all of the food ready, we needed to deliver it to George’s sister, which was also where Sandy was staying the night. I beat her to the back seat of the car (see Sandy, I can be as stubborn as you!), and made HER ride in the front seat, where she belongs (no mom of George should ride in the back seat). On the freeway a car cut us off and George yells “that bastard tried to kill me! And I’ve got fruit in the back!”
We all made it to his sister’s place in one piece, fruit undamaged, and I finally got to meet her and her husband. They were great, and did an amazing job with all of the food and party preparations.
Through all of this George and I were tweeting back and forth with the rest of the DOC crew that had come in from out of town. It was getting late, and we were exhausted from traveling and working, but we both really wanted to see everyone, so we headed over. We walked into a very intense game of Trivial Pursuit 80’s edition, and witnessed Chris pull an impossible answer out of thin air (FYR = Former Yugoslav Republic? What?!). Is it Ok to say that I’ve never felt more stupid than I did listening to the questions and answers of this game?
Seven of us from all over the United States flew into California for George. I love that. It is another sign of just how important George is to us and the DOC. Sara came in from Florida, Lee Ann from Philly, Melissa from St. Louis, Dayle & Chris (and the duck) from the DC/Virginia area, Suzanne from Atlanta, and me from Minneapolis. That is pretty dang cool, right? I think it speaks highly of George, and the influence he has around the DOC.
To end the night, George and I had to visit Walmart. At 2:15 AM. As soon as we rounded the first corner we were stopped by a guy sweeping the aisle.
“Hey guys, I have a question for you, I’d like to run something by you.” as he stops sweeping and props his elbow up on the broom handle.
“If there was a battle between zombies and vampires, who would win? I mean, do zombies even have blood? Would vampires even go after them?”
George pauses for only a second, as if he’s completely unfazed by this guy and his question. “Well, vampires have brains, so the zombies would go after them, but I don’t know if vampires would go after the zombies. Maybe it would be more like a civil war within the vampires?”
Walmart guy eyes lit up! “Ooooh…civil war….I like that!” “Traditional zombies are very slow, and vampires are fast. They could run circles around zombies, ripping limbs off and stuff”
George says “and vampires can just turn into bats and fly away anyway, right?”
Right then, the guy gets super serious. He stretches out his arm, points at George’s chest, and says “In brightest day, in blackest night, no evil shall escape my sight…”
I’m officially concerned now, and start watching George for some signal to split up and run in different directions. George is creeping backward and trying to figure out what the heck this guy is doing.
“…let those who worship evil’s might,” Walmart guy continues, buzzing with energy, “beware my power, GREEN LANTERN’S LIGHT!”
George glances down at his t-shirt, and it all makes sense. He’s wearing a Green Lantern t-shirt. “Um… hehe, you’re better than I am dude!” George says “can you show us to the duct tape?”