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A few years ago my friends and I started a tradition where we would go count down to the new year at my friend Andrew’s cemetery plot. He passed away on Sept. 20, 2007 from Olfactory Neuroblastoma.
There’s too much to say about Andrew for me to write down in a blog post, and I’m probably not ready for that yet anyways.
One thought that came into my mind at the cemetery this year was the topic of tradition. Often times I think traditions are silly. As Mark Twain says in the Adventures of Tom Sawyer, “The less there is to justify a traditional custom, the harder it is to get rid of it”. Why do people have to tell kids that Santa is real? Why do people have to buy a wedding ring or get married? Why do people have to give red bags to each other knowing that they will give you one too, and it might be awkward if one is greater than the other?
I’ve come to realize more and more that one good reason to keep up a tradition is the beauty of it. Like art. There’s a depth to each work of art that cannot be seen on the surface - layers of stories buried beneath the one we see.
This art is beautiful to me, for reasons too great to tell. Happy 2014 Andrew.