It's that odd time of the night, where it's too late to be the night and too early to be morning. There are a patch of keys on this laptop that don't seem to want to work unless you really pound on them. Regardless, here I am, writing away.
I have many friends, of many different backgrounds. I learned at a young age that I would mix them together at my own peril, as it seems not everyone is as open to meeting other people as I am. At the age I am now, I can see how people from my youth "turned out" as it were. Facing it, we're grown adults now, the only changes we're going to get is who married/divorced/had an affair with whom, what kind of job they have, and if they're still alive.
I met one particular friend of mine in high school, then worked with him briefly. He was a bit of a wild one in school, gave the teachers and administrators hell from time to time, but after that...something odd happened. He disappeared for a few years, but when he came back that spark, that wildness that drew people in was gone. His eyes were blank, like something was physically taken out of him. They still are. I no longer talk to or see him, but now and again I'll see a picture of him and it's haunting. I can't describe it any better than to say it's like he died but his body doesn't know that yet.
I know people from all walks of life, from people with so much to people with nothing at all, and just about everyone has lost something of value in their life. You can see it in their eyes, depending on the level of it, but no one I know has that kind of loss that I can see in that picture. The worst part is, he's smiling in that picture.